Prediction and prevention of adverse drug events

Research group information

Contact information

Research group leader

  • Professor
    Miia Turpeinen

Research group description

Polypharmacy, i.e. use of multiple medicinal products at the same time, is widespread in current drug therapy framework. Management of complex diseases often requires concomitant use of products for synergistic actions, while multiple preventive medications create situations in which pharmacotherapy of any additional condition results in polypharmacy. Particularly, advanced age is often associated with a number of comorbidities, which require the use of several drugs. Consequently, 75 to 80 year old subjects have an average of 10 drugs in regular use. As a drawback, polypharmacy is a major reason for serious or fatal adverse drug events (ADEs), constituting a major concern in all pharmacotherapy. The incidence of ADEs is fourth of the leading causes of death in the Western world and ADEs contribute to significant economic losses and increased hospitalization.

Polypharmacy is usually managed by following development of subject’s symptoms and disease progression, and adjusting drug dosing and selection accordingly. However, this cannot usually take into consideration many subject-centered treatment uncertainties and there are situations in which more objective ascertainment of individual drug use would be desirable. In addition, medication errors and patient incompliance are often neglected in medication reconciliation and remain unidentified in acute hospitalizations and readmissions.

Our team

  • Turpeinen Miia, MD, PhD, professor, group leader
  • Laatikainen Outi, PhD
  • Sneck Sami, PhD
  • Tenhunen Olli, docent

PhD students

  • Falkenbach Petra, MSc
  • Hautajärvi Heidi, MSc
  • Holtinkoski Tarja, MSc
  • Knuuti Katja, MSc (Pharm)
  • Mustakallio Jaakko, MSc (Pharm)

Where are we headed

Most ADEs could be predicted and avoided beforehand. The main objective of our research project is to develop an integrated, multimodality approach to better detect and identify ADEs, and to safely manage polypharmacy and promote rational drug prescribing.

Our main collaborators

  • PROSHADE-consortium:
  • Docent Ari Tolonen, Admescope Ltd
  • Docent Sampo Mattila, University of Oulu
  • Prof. Jouko Miettunen, University of Oulu
  • Docent Kari Laine, Medbase Ltd
  • Sirpa Ämmälä Oulu University Hospital

How to find us