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Advances in Pharmacological Sciences
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 846163, 8 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2012/846163
Research Article

Trends in Ambulatory Prescribing of Antiplatelet Therapy among US Ischemic Stroke Patients: 2000–2007

1College of Pharmacy, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH 43210, USA
2RTI Health Solutions, Research Triangle Park, Durham, NC 27709, USA
3Department of Internal Medicine, College of Medicine, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH, USA
4Division of Health Services Management and Policy, College of Public Health, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH 43210, USA
5Ann Arbor VA Healthcare System and Departments of Medicine and Neurology, The University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109, USA
6Health Services Management and Policy, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH 43210, USA
7Department of Clinical, Social and Administrative Sciences, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109, USA
8Clinical, Social and Administrative Sciences, College of Pharmacy, University of Michigan, 428 Church Street, Ann Arbor, MI 48109, USA

Received 15 June 2012; Accepted 30 October 2012

Academic Editor: Paola Patrignani

Copyright © 2012 Sudeep Karve et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Objective. Study objectives were to assess temporal trends and identify patient- and practice-level predictors of the prescription of antiplatelet medications in a national sample of ischemic stroke (IS) patients seeking ambulatory care. Methods. IS-related outpatient visits by adults were identified using the National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey and National Hospital Ambulatory Medical Care Survey for the years 2000–2007. We assessed prescribing of antiplatelet medications using the generic drug code and drug entry codes in these data. Temporal trends in antiplatelet prescribing were assessed using the Cochran-Mantel-Haenszel test for trend. Results. We identified 9.5 million IS-related ambulatory visits. Antiplatelet medications were prescribed at 35.5% of visits. Physician office prescribing of the clopidogrel-aspirin combination increased significantly from 0.5% in 2000 to 22.0% in 2007 ( ), whereas prescribing of aspirin decreased from 17.9% to 7.0% ( ) during the same period. Conclusion. We observed a continued increase in prescription of the aspirin-clopidogrel combination from 2000 to 2007. Clinical trial evidence suggests that the aspirin-clopidogrel combination does not provide any additional benefit compared with clopidogrel alone; however, our study findings indicate that even with lack of adequate clinical evidence physician prescribing of this combination has increased in real-world community settings.