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What Is Polypharmacy?

04/29/2010

How should polypharmacy be defined? In a list-serve in which I participate psychiatrists commented thus in relation to a case under consideration:
Dr. P: "My definition of "Polypharmacy" would apply to any inappropriate use of any medication."
Dr. R says the term is pejorative.
Dr. M says, "I don't mean to use the term "polypharmacy" in a pejorative way, simply that there are several meds
And it makes it difficult for me to know what is or is not helping..."
Here's my definition, written years ago.
Other thoughts? I think there is also a question of what should be the threshold. I can't see that as some arbitrary number of drugs, though.