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Análise do perfil de automedicação em mulheres idosas brasileiras

The elderly consume more medications than other age groups, being susceptible to irrational use of therapeutic drugs. This work describes a cross-sectional study that evaluated selfmedication practiced by elderly women, who were assisted at the Elderly Care Facility of the hospital of the Catholic University of Brasilia. The socio-economical variables analyzed were age group, educational level and monthly family income. The pharmaceuticals were evaluated according to prevalence, suitability for the age group and possible drug interactions. Among the 218 patients interviewed, 26% declared self-medication practices, part of them (40%) were prescription drugs. Anti-inflammatory, analgesic and antipyretic drugs were the most frequently consumed without professional orientation, followed by phytotherapeutic/natural and cardiovascular agents. Among the self-medicated patients 65% had incomplete or no formal basic education whereas 32% had earnings equal to or inferior to one minimum wage. The mean consumption of drugs by self-medication was not influenced by socio-economical variables. The practice of selfmedication involves potentially harmful drug interactions and use of agents inappropriate for the age group.