Medication packaging and older patients: a systematic review

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The global challenges posed by demographic change call for more senior-friendly medication packaging. This paper presents a comprehensive integrated view and synthesis of the literature on medication packaging and older people. Considering the multidisciplinary nature of the research field, a systematic review was conducted in four databases (Scopus, Web of Science, Medline and Engineering Village), limited to original research studies containing empirical data and English-language papers, published until January 2015. Manual reference mining was carried out for other relevant papers, and a critical appraisal methodology was applied to judge the quality of the papers. In total, 34 studies are fully reviewed and classified according to the main characteristics of the studies, information about older patients and impact of the packaging on medication use. As a result, the review indicates the literature to be fragmented and diverse yet composed of two major interconnected research streams (physical functionality and user capability; medication management) and orientations (packaging; user). The physical functionality and user capability stream of research with a packaging orientation addresses child-resistant containers (CRCs), whereas the user-oriented studies address openability, i.e. the ease of opening the medication. In contrast, the medication management stream of research with a packaging orientation focuses on the adherence outcomes of different package aids, whereas the user-oriented studies focus on the counselling provided by healthcare professionals and coping strategies for older patients to handle the packages. These original findings provide valuable input to researchers and practitioners and offer guidance for the further development of medication packaging.


Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Engineering and Technology
  • Medical Engineering


  • medication management, medication packaging, older patients, systematic literature review, user capability
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)525–558
JournalPackaging Technology and Science
Issue number8
Early online date2016 Nov 9
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Aug
Publication categoryResearch
Event20th IAPRI World Conference on Packaging, 2016 - Campinas, Brazil
Duration: 2016 Jun 122016 Jun 15

Related research output

Giana Lorenzini, 2018 Apr 24, Lund: Division of Packaging Logistics, Department of Design Sciences. 138 p.

Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis (compilation)

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Related activities

Lorenzini, G. (Presenter), Hellström, D. (Contributor)
2016 Jun 122016 Jun 15

Activity: Participating in or organising an eventParticipation in conference

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