'Give lung cancer patients fewer preventive meds'

Efforts are needed to deprescribe such drugs in those nearing end of life, say researchers

On discharge from the hospital, patients with advanced lung cancer may be prescribed preventive drugs for conditions such as diabetes and heart disease, but efforts should be made to deprescribe such medications, researchers say.

"Our research shows that patients with advanced lung cancer, typically in the last months of life, use complex medication regimens that are burdensome and may even be harmful, given that the risks of side effects outweigh the potential benefits," UK researcher Dr Adam Todd of Newcastle University said.

"Even if we consider the different healthcare systems from the US and the UK, this situation is still apparent, which illustrates the international significance of this problem."

Dr Todd and colleagues studied 125 patients who died of lung cancer at a facility in the UK and 191 such patients at a US centre.

At both sites, the mean age was mid- to