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Study reveals some patients stopping wrong drugs

Study reveals some patients stopping wrong drugs before surgery

Confusion about what medications patients can take before surgery is potentially putting them at risk a New Zealand study has found.

The audit conducted in Auckland by specialist anaesthetists Dr Nicholas Lightfoot and Dr Daniel Wood looked at what medication people stopped before surgery and why.

While some medications should be stopped, others like heart medication help prevent problems arising at the time of surgery.

The audit found many people stopped some or all of their medications on the day of surgery mostly due to not understanding instructions they were given.

The authors have recommended improving the communication of both verbal and written instructions given to patients to help people understand which medications they should be taking.

They say improving the way doctors and nurses give instructions should help prevent some avoidable complications during and after surgery.

The results of the study have been published in the New Zealand Medical Journal.

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