How Many Pills Do Seniors Take Daily?


Source: Medco Health Solutions

Comments (7)

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  1. Devon Herrick says:

    A few years ago a study found that about one-in-five drugs taken by seniors are either contraindicated for them, their condition or contraindicated for other drugs they are taking. The more drugs a senior takes, the far greater the likelihood that some are unnecessary – or harmful. Once the number of drugs exceeds a dozen, the chances are that half the drugs they take are to counteract the side-affects of the other half.

  2. Bruce says:

    There is no way on God’s green earth that anyone should be taking 20 pills. And there is probably no way that anybody could know how they all interact with each other.

  3. Vicki says:

    I think i agree with Bruce. I’m not sure anyone should even be taking ten pills.

  4. Linda Gorman says:

    Must be a bunch of young commentators here. If one has a couple of serious comorbidities, and a lot of older people do, taking a lot of pills is not out of line, especially if one takes generics or less expensive meds. Delivery systems with fewer doses can be more expensive.

    A 2009 Newsweek article described one kidney transplant patient who took 17 pills a day for immunosuppression and blood pressure control. If you have COPD, congestive heart failure, and diabetes, you are going to take a lot more.

    Keep in mind, however, that nobody knows if people are actually taking those pills. Remember all the handwringing over noncompliance?

  5. Brian Simpson says:

    Does anyone else find it weird that none of these categories include the number 0?

  6. Linda Gorman says:


    Good point.

  7. Jim Brady says:

    I don’t take any prescriptions drugs (68 years of age) what catagory am I in?