Medicine usage in Parkinson's disease patients is often imperfect, in particular irregular timing of medication. The effect of informing Parkinson's disease patients about the continuous dopaminergic hypothesis (to encourage regular medicine intake) on medication adherence and motor control was tested.
Patients were randomised either to the active group (receiving the intervention) or control group (no extra information). Antiparkinson medicine usage was monitored for 3 months before and after the intervention using electronic pill bottles which record the date and time of opening (MEMS®, Aardex, Switzerland) and data used to calculate the percentage of doses taken at correct time intervals.
43 patients (52%) were randomised to active counselling, and 40 (48%) were controls (standard management). The intervention effect (difference in timing adherence pre- to post-intervention between the 2 groups) was 13.4% (CI 5.1 to 21.7), p = 0.002. Parkinson motor scores did not change significantly (active group 0.1, CI -3.4 to 3.7) versus controls (4.5, CI 1.6 to 7.1), p = 0.06.
Timing adherence, but not motor scores, improves by providing patients with extra information. Therapy timing is of potential importance in Parkinson's disease management.
Trial registration number