Antipsychotics in the general population and the driver population: comparisons from a population-based registry study

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Antipsychotics are considered driving-impairing medicines. A population-based registry study design was conceived to assess the year-2016 antipsychotic dispensation in Castile and León, Spain. Weighting was performed to obtain the adjusted antipsychotic consumption for licensed drivers according to age and gender using the Spanish national drivers’ license census data. In 2016, antipsychotics were dispensed to 3.86% of the general population and 2.71% of licensed drivers. Antipsychotic use was higher in females (4.72%) than in males (2.98%), and increased as age increased, but women drivers used less antipsychotics after 60 years old. Chronic antipsychotic use (≥30 days) accounted for 1.62%. Typical antipsychotics predominated among acute users (1.60% versus 0.09%), while atypical antipsychotics were the rule in chronic use (1.41% versus 0.36%). A concomitant use of antipsychotics with other driving-impairing medicines was also common. This study is intended for updating the epidemiological knowledge of all involved in the control of use of antipsychotics and other driving-impairing medicines (healthcare providers, patients, authorities, and drug developers) in order to improve prescribing/dispensing and a well tolerated use of all driving-impairing medicines by the population. Awareness is needed to improve safety on driving, and there is a need worldwide to improve interventions in the field of medicines and driving.

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