Antipsychotic drugs have been associated with increased mortality, stroke and myocardial infarction in people with dementia. Concerns have been raised that antipsychotic prescribing may have increased during the COVID-19 pandemic due to social restrictions imposed to limit the spread of the virus. We used multisource, routinely-collected healthcare data from Wales, UK, to investigate prescribing and mortality trends in people with dementia before and during the COVID-19 pandemic.
We used individual-level, anonymised, population-scale linked health data to identify adults aged ≥60 years with a diagnosis of dementia in Wales, UK. We explored antipsychotic prescribing trends over 67 months between 1st January 2016 and 1st August 2021, overall and stratified by age and dementia subtype. We used time series analyses to examine all-cause, myocardial infarction (MI) and stroke mortality over the study period and identified the leading causes of death in people with dementia.
Original content: Health Data Research Innovation Gateway