An education-behavioural intervention improves adherence to statins
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Effective treatment of hyperlipidemia is an important precondition for cardiovascular diseases. Unfortunately, adherence to lipid-lowering treatment is unsatisfactory. In order to improve adherence to statins, an intervention combining educational and behavioural components was tested in general practice settings.
A total of 198 outpatients with untreated hyperlipidemia were enrolled in this open-label, prospective, randomised study. Patients were prescribed simvastatin, in initial dosage of 20 mg daily, and followed for 48 weeks. Intervention group received educational counseling at each visit (that is every 8 weeks); and were also asked to adopt a routine evening activity of their choice for a reminder. Control group obtained usual care. Primary outcome measure was patient adherence, expressed as medication possession ratio (MPR).
Patients’ mean age was 59.6 +/- 9.1 years. Study arms differed in their level of adherence: mean ± SD MPR was 95.4±53.7% and 81.7±31.0%, for intervention and control group, respectively (P<0.05). Patients from intervention group found a reminder activity useful in over 90% of cases.
Simple inexpensive educational-behavioural intervention proved to be effective in enhancing adherence to statins in hyperlipidemia. Given the health and economic consequences of non-adherence, these results may have high clinical, and practical usefulness.
KeywordsPatient adherence Statins Hyperlipidemia Education-behavioural intervention Primary prevention Secondary prevention
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