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Reasons for discontinuation of GLP1 receptor agonists: data from a real-world cross-sectional survey of physicians and their patients with type 2 diabetes

Authors Sikirica MV, Martin AA, Wood R, Leith A, Piercy J, Higgins V

Received 6 May 2017

Accepted for publication 15 August 2017

Published 29 September 2017 Volume 2017:10 Pages 403—412


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Professor Ming-Hui Zou

Mirko V Sikirica,1 Alan A Martin,2 Robert Wood,3 Andrea Leith,3 James Piercy,3 Victoria Higgins3

1Value Evidence and Outcomes, GlaxoSmithKline, Collegeville, PA, USA; 2Value Evidence and Outcomes, GlaxoSmithKline, London, UK; 3Diabetes, Adelphi Real World, Bollington, Cheshire, UK

Aim: Nonadherence to glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonists (GLP1 RAs) is relatively common among patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). This study sought to identify reasons why patients discontinue GLP1 RAs.
Materials and methods: Retrospective data from the Adelphi Diabetes Disease Specific Programme were used. Physicians managing patients with T2DM were surveyed via face-to-face interviews, and patients treated for T2DM were surveyed via self-completed questionnaires. Patient data were stratified by current versus prior GLP1 RA use.
Results: Physicians (n=443) most frequently reported inadequate blood glucose control (45.6%), nausea/vomiting (43.8%), and gastrointestinal (GI) side effects (36.8%) as reasons for GLP1 RA discontinuation. Patients (n=194) reported the GI-related issues “Made me feel sick” (64.4%) and “Made me throw up” (45.4%) as their top reasons for discontinuation. The most common problems reported (excluding cost) for those currently using GLP1 RAs were “Prefer oral medication over injections” (patients 56%, physicians 32.6%), “Made me feel sick” (patients 38.1%, physicians 16.3%), and “Did not help lose weight” (patients 25.4%, physicians 18%). The most bothersome problems for patients globally (frequency reporting very/extremely bothersome) (excluding cost) were “Difficult to plan meals around” (55.6%), “Made me throw up” (51.6%), and “Caused weight gain” (50%).
Conclusion: Both patients and physicians reported GI-related issues as a prominent factor, but disparities between patient experiences and physician perceptions were revealed, suggesting gaps in physician–patient communication. Understanding patients’ expectations of GLP1 RAs and physicians’ patient-management practices may help increase GLP1 RA adherence and thereby potentially enhance diabetes care.

Keywords: antidiabetic drug, cross-sectional survey, discontinuation, incretins, incretin therapy, glycemic control

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