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Studies of Drug Use

Studies of drug use are an important part of pharmacoepidemiology, which is the study of the use and effects of drugs in large populations. These are used to investigate patterns, determine the prevalence and incidence of drug-related events, and assess the effectiveness and safety of drugs in real-world settings.

There are several types, including:

  1. Drug utilization studies: These focus on the patterns of drug use in populations. These can provide information on the prevalence, incidence, and duration of use, as well as factors that influence use of drugs, such as age, sex, and socioeconomic status.
  2. Prescription sequence symmetry analysis (PSSA): PSSA is a type of drug utilization study that uses prescription data to assess whether drugs are being prescribed to treat specific conditions or as a result of an adverse event.
  3. Adherence studies: Adherence studies focus on whether patients are taking drugs as prescribed. These studies can provide insight into the factors that influence adherence, such as dosing frequency, side effects, and patient beliefs.
  4. Drug safety studies: Safety studies assess the risks associated with use of drug. These studies can be conducted using observational data, such as electronic health records or administrative claims data, to identify adverse events that may be associated with use of drug.
  5. Drug effectiveness studies: Drug effectiveness studies are used to assess the benefits of drugs in real-world settings. These studies can be conducted using observational data or randomized controlled trials (RCTs) to compare the effectiveness of drugs with different treatment options.
  6. Pharmacoeconomic studies: Pharmacoeconomic studies assess the economic impact of drugs, including their cost-effectiveness and budget impact.

They are important for understanding the risks and benefits of drugs in real-world settings. These studies can provide valuable information for healthcare providers, patients, and policymakers, and can help inform drug development and regulatory decisions.

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