Active Ingredient: Hydroxyzine
Later in this article, I will explain how you and your clinicians should consider stopping, switching, or reducing any medications that increase fall risk, or are otherwise risky for older adults.
But first, let me explain which medications you and your doctors should be looking out for. These medications generally fall into one of two three broad categories: Medications that affect the brain.
Many tend to cause some sedation or drowsiness. Medications that affect blood pressure. A drop in BP — or chronically low BP — can increase fall risk. Older adults can easily experience a drop in blood pressure when they stand. This is called postural or orthostatic hypotension.
Most medications for high blood pressure can cause or worsen postural hypotension.
Medications such as tamsulosin brand name Flomax and related medications to improve urination can also cause postural hypotension. Medications that lower blood sugar.
This is only a consideration for older adults with diabetes. People with diabetes have a higher risk of falls compared to others of the same age.
Hypoglycemia low blood sugar due to medications is one of many factors that has been associated with falls in people with diabetes. Below, I share my list of ten common types of medications associated with falls.
This class of medication is often prescribed to help people sleep, or to help with anxiety.
They do work for this purpose, but they are habit-forming and have been associated with developing dementia. Commonly prescribed benzodiazepines include lorazepam, diazepam, temazepam, alprazolam brand names Ativan, Valium, Restoril, and Xanax, respectively Clinical research studies consistently find that benzodiazepines are associated with increased fall risk.
These drugs should always be tapered, under medical supervision.Metoclopramide, a dopamine antagonist and a potent central antiemetic, is ineffective in preventing motion sickness Kohl, 1987 D there is positive evidence of human fetal risk, use only in cannot be used or are ineffective.
Non-benzodiazepine prescription sedatives. These drugs are usually prescribed to treat insomnia or sleep difficulties.
These have been shown in clinical studies to impair balance — and thinking!
These are medications originally developed to treat schizophrenia and other illnesses featuring psychosis symptoms.
They are also sometimes prescribed to people with depression. The first-generation antipsychotic haloperidol Haldol is still sometimes used.
Clinical research indicates that antipsychotics are associated with increased falls.