Table 2

Relationship between drugs, prescribing rates, ADEs, severity of ADEs, and hospitalisation and manifestations of ADEs in patients aged 45 and over

Drug group (ATC level 3)BEACH (2007–2010)SAND (all samples)SAND (2010 samples only)
ATC codeRelative prescribing frequency, per cent (95% CI; n=170 492)Relative ADE frequency, per cent (95% CI; n =912)Drug sub-group, ATC level 4 or ATC level 3 (ATC code)Relative ADE frequency, per cent (95% CI; n=912)Severity of ADEHospitalisedManifestation of most recent ADE
Main type/s of reaction (ICPC-2 rubrics)
Mild, percentage of subgroupModerate, percentage of subgroupSevere, percentage of subgroupPercentage of sub-groupColumn, per cent
OpioidsN02A6.5 (6.3 to 6.7)8.2 (6.3 to 10.2)Natural opium alkaloids
4.2 (2.7 to 5.6)52.830.616.719.414.3Constipation, vomiting, nausea, vertigo/dizziness and sleep disturbance
AntidepressantsN06A4.3 (4.1 to 4.4)7.8 (6.0 to 9.6)Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors
3.7 (2.7 to.0) anxious, diarrhoea and alpitations
Lipid-modifying agents, plainC10A6.1 (5.9 to 6.2)6.9 (5.0 to 8.8)Statins
6.4 (4.5 to 8.2)36.248.315.53.40.0Muscle pain, urticaria and digestive symptom NOS
NSAIDsM01A3.7 (3.6 to 3.9)6.3 (4.7 to 7.8)NSAIDs
6.3 (4.7 to 7.8)45.645.68.810.58.1Abdominal/epigastric pain, nausea, rash and swollen ankles/oedema
ACE inhibitors, plainC09A4.0 (3.9 to 4.1)5.3 (3.7 to 6.8)ACE inhibitors—plain (C09AA)5.3 (3.7 to 6.8)64.631.
PenicillinsJ01C3.9 (3.7 to 4.0)4.8 (3.4 to 6.3)Penicillins
4.8 (3.4 to 6.3)50.038.611.44.54.1Diarrhoea, rash and nausea
Selective calcium channel blockers with mainly vascular effectsC08C2.6 (2.5 to 2.7)3.9 (2.7 to 5.2)Calcium channel blockers (C08C)3.9 (2.7 to 5.2)55.630.613.90.00.0Swollen ankles/oedema and rash
Other analgesics N02B3.3 (3.2 to 3.4)3.9 (2.7 to 5.2)Salicylates (N02BA)1.4 (0.7 to 2.2)46.238.515.416.74.1Cardiac arrhythmia, malaena, haematuria and haemoptysis
Anilides (N02BE)2.5 (1.4 to 3.6)
β blocking agentsC07A2.9 (2.8 to 3.0)2.6 (1.6 to 3.6)β blocking agents (C07A)2.6 (1.6 to 3.6) arrhythmia, nausea, weakness/tiredness and postural hypotension
Hypoglycaemic agents excluding insulinsA10B3.4 (3.3 to 3.5)2.6 (1.5 to 3.7)Biguanides (A10BA)1.5 (0.7 to 2.3)14.371.414.37.12.0Diarrhoea and nausea
Drugs for bone structure and mineralisationM05B0.9 (0.9 to 1.0)2.3 (1.3 to 3.3)Bisphosphonates (M05BA/BB)1.5 (0.7 to 2.3)38.938.922.20.00.0Fever, nausea and pain
Drugs for peptic ulcer and gastro-oesophageal reflux diseaseA02B4.4 (4.3 to 4.5)2.2 (1.2 to 3.1)Proton pump inhibitors (A02BC)2.0 (1.1 to 2.9)38.944.416.76.32.0Diarrhoea and abdominal pain
AntiepilepticsN03A0.8 (0.7 to 0.8)1.8 (0.8 to 2.7)Antiepileptics (N03A)1.8 (0.8 to 2.7)56.331.312.56.32.0Neurological symptom NOS, sleep disorder and speech disorder
  • ADE, adverse drug events; ATC, Anatomical Therapeutic Chemical; BEACH, Bettering the Evaluation And Care of Health; ICPC-2, International Classification of Primary Care Version 2; NOS, not otherwise specified; NSAIDs, Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Agents; SAND, Supplementary Analysis of Nominated Data.