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Effect of patient education on medication adherence of patients with rheumatoid arthritis: a randomized controlled trial

Authors Taibanguay N, Chaiamnuay S, Asavatanabodee P, Narongroeknawin P

Received 30 October 2018

Accepted for publication 11 December 2018

Published 11 January 2019 Volume 2019:13 Pages 119—129


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Johnny Chen

Nichapa Taibanguay, Sumapa Chaiamnuay, Paijit Asavatanabodee, Pongthorn Narongroeknawin

Division of Rheumatology, Department of Internal Medicine, Phramongkutklao Hospital and College of Medicine, Bangkok, Thailand

Purpose: There is a general understanding that patient educational interventions for enhancing medication adherence are important. However, their success at improving adherence is debatable. This study aimed to assess the influence of different modes of patient education on medication adherence in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA).
Materials and methods: One hundred and twenty RA patients with non-adherence, defined as pill count ≤80% or medication-taking behavior questionnaire for Thai patient ≤23, were randomized by block randomization and assigned in a 1:1 allocation ratio to two study arms: multi-component intervention group or single intervention group. The multi-component intervention group received 30-minute directed counseling and a disease information pamphlet. The single intervention group received only a disease information pamphlet. The primary outcomes were an improvement in an adherence rate measured by pill count after 12 weeks. The Thai Clinical Trial Registry number is TCTR20171207003.
Results: After 12 weeks, the pill count adherence rate increased significantly from baseline in both study groups. In the multi-component intervention group, adherence rate increased from 92.21±14.05 to 97.59±10.07 (P=0.002) and in the single intervention group, it increased from 88.60±19.66 to 92.42±14.27 (P=0.044). However, the mean difference between the multi-component intervention group and the single intervention group was not significant (5.38±12.90 vs 3.18±14.23, P=0.531). Clinical outcomes, including disease activity score 28, EuroQoL-5D, EuroQol visual analog scale, pain score, and physician global assessment were unchanged from baseline in both groups.
Conclusion: Patient education significantly improved adherence. However, there were no differences between single education intervention and multi-component education intervention in improving medication adherence. Provision of a disease information pamphlet with or without directed counseling can equally enhance medication adherence of patients with RA.

Keywords: adherence, rheumatoid arthritis, education, disease pamphlet

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