Patient adherence to antidepressants is poor. However, this is rather unsurprising, given the equivocal efficacy, side effects, and practical problems of antidepressants. The aim of this study was to examine a wide array of patient experiences and perceptions regarding the efficacy, side effects, and practical problems of antidepressants, as well as their associations with nonadherence, and whether patients’ perceived self-efficacy moderated these associations.
Patients and methods
Experiences and perceptions of 225 patients, recruited through community pharmacies, were efficiently assessed with the Tailored Medicine Inventory. Nonadherence was assessed through self-report and pharmacy refill data.
Many patients were not convinced of the efficacy, thought the efficacy to be limited or did not believe antidepressants to prevent relapse, were worried about or had experienced one or more side effects, and/or had experienced one or more practical problems regarding information, intake, and packaging. Being convinced of efficacy was associated with lower intentional nonadherence (odds ratio [OR] 0.9, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.8–0.96). A higher number of practical problems experienced was associated with increased unintentional nonadherence (OR 1.3, 95% CI 1.1–1.7). Higher perceived self-efficacy regarding taking antidepressants was associated with lower unintentional nonadherence (OR 0.7, 95% CI 0.5–0.9). Perceived self-efficacy did not moderate associations of patient experiences and perceptions with nonadherence.
Assessing a wide array of patients’ experiences and perceptions regarding the efficacy, side effects, and practical problems of antidepressants contributes to better understanding of nonadherence to antidepressants. Guiding physician–patient conversations by patients’ experiences and perceptions may reduce both unintentional and intentional nonadherence. Also, it may give rise to considerations of prudent discontinuation, eg, when patients are not convinced of the efficacy.
antidepressants; efficacy; side effects; practical problems; patients’ experiences and perceptions; perceived self-efficacy; nonadherence
Oral dabigatran was recently approved as an alternative to warfarin for prevention of stroke and systemic embolism in patients with nonvalvular atrial fibrillation. Unlike warfarin, dabigatran has a fixed dosage and few drug interactions, and does not require anticoagulation monitoring or dietary restrictions.
This study aimed to describe and compare characteristics of patients with atrial fibrillation who used dabigatran or only warfarin. Patients with a self-reported diagnosis of atrial fibrillation aged ≥18 years who were receiving (or had received) warfarin or dabigatran completed an online survey. Differences in characteristics of dabigatran and warfarin users were tested using chi-squared tests and analysis of variance for categorical and continuous variables, respectively.
Overall, 364 patients were surveyed (204 warfarin users, 160 dabigatran users). The mean age was 65.1 years, and 68.7% were male. Dabigatran users were more likely than warfarin users to be female (36.9% versus 27.0%) and to have experienced adverse events, including gastrointestinal bleeding, in the 3 months before the survey (21.9% versus 6.9%; P<0.05). Both groups reported high medication adherence (dabigatran users 0.65 versus warfarin users 0.63 missed doses/month). Dabigatran users were more likely than warfarin users to discuss treatment options with their physician before beginning therapy (36.9% versus 24.5%; P<0.05) and less likely to switch anticoagulant medication (10.7% versus 31.9%; P<0.05). Although dabigatran users were more likely to experience adverse events, they reported greater satisfaction with anticoagulation treatment than warfarin users.
The efficacy and convenience reported by dabigatran users resulted in greater treatment satisfaction among dabigatran users, even though adverse events decreased it. Treatment strategies that minimize adverse events may improve treatment satisfaction and adherence among patients with atrial fibrillation.
atrial fibrillation; warfarin; dabigatran
Effective interaction between care providers and patients is crucial for the success of most medical treatments; in nutritional medical treatment, it is of paramount importance. The aim of the present study was to ascertain the role of the dietitian–patient relationship and the counseling approach in influencing individual patient decisions to adhere to counseling by persisting with nutritional treatment.
We conducted focus groups with two types of patients, namely, those who had consulted dietitians only once and those who had attended at least three appointments. We divided these two groups into 12 focus groups. In addition, in-depth interviews were held with 17 clinical dietitians. Our qualitative research was based on the perceptions of patients and dietitians.
When the encounter between the dietitian and the patient followed the standard educational and informative approach, both the short-term nature of the interaction and the absence of an individualized therapeutic program discouraged patients from persisting with treatment. In contrast, the counseling and therapeutic nutritional approach promoted nutritional guidance through broader behavioral and lifestyle therapies. This approach appears more appropriate for chronically ill patients. The dietitians and some of the patients understand that the profession is changing from the informative and educational approach to a therapeutic counseling approach, but it is difficult for them to adapt to the new model.
Most patients appear to want individualized, not standardized, treatment. In order to change patients’ eating patterns, dietitians must adopt a more therapeutic approach and relate to patients’ cultural needs and desires to achieve sustainable results.
therapeutic counseling approach; nutrition educational approach; treatment; nutritional
Drug-related problems (DRP) following hospital discharge are common among elderly patients using multiple drugs for the treatment of chronic diseases. The aim of this study was to investigate the occurrence of DRP in these patients using a specific tool for the identification of DRP by community pharmacists.
An observational study involving 340 patients aged over 60 years using at least five prescription drugs and discharged from hospital. The occurrence of DRP was assessed by means of an identification tool specifically developed for use by community pharmacists, including a semistructured patient interview and a checklist of common DRP.
In total, 992 potential DRP were observed in the 340 patients (mean 2.9 ± 1.7). No drug prescribed but clear indication, an unnecessarily long duration of treatment, dose too low, and incorrect drug selection were the DRP most commonly observed. Ten percent of DRP occurring in 71 patients were drug–drug interactions. The number of DRP was related to the number of drugs prescribed. Frequently occurring DRP found using the patient interview were fear of side effects and no or insufficient knowledge of drug use. Medication of patients discharged from the pulmonary department and of those with type 2 diabetes was particularly associated with occurrence of DRP.
Following hospital discharge, DRP occur frequently among elderly patients using five or more drugs for the treatment of chronic disease. The number of DRP increased with the number of drugs used. An important task for community pharmacists is to identify, resolve, and prevent the occurrence of DRP among this patient group. Since DRP are associated with an increased risk of hospital readmissions, morbidity, and mortality, it is very important to develop intervention strategies to resolve and prevent DRP.
drug-related problems; elderly; discharge from hospital; community pharmacy
Communication with patients with fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) is often considered difficult. The primary objective of this explorative study was to describe the communication preferences of FMS patients in comparison with other chronic diseases, and the secondary objective was to identify patient-related predictors of those communication preferences.
A total of 256 FMS patients were asked to fill out the KOPRA [(Kommunikationspraeferenzen), communication preferences of patients with chronic illness] questionnaire at the beginning of their rehabilitation, answering questions about their communication preferences. The KOPRA’s descriptive parameters were calculated and compared with other diagnosis groups. In order to include as many influencing factors as possible, data on patient-related sociodemographic, medical, pain impact and psychologic variables were gathered. A hierarchical regression analysis with four steps was performed to identify patient-related predictors of patients’ communication preferences.
FMS patients consider an open and patient-centered communication style to be especially important. Emotionally supportive communication and communication about personal circumstances are important for FMS patients, but the preferences of individual patients vary widely. FMS patients reveal higher values in all the subdimensions of communication preferences compared with patients with low back pain or chronic ischemic heart disease. Only a few variables appear to predict patient communication preferences. The explained variance ranged from 3.1% to 9.7%. Psychologic variables have been identified as predictors in conjunction with all communication preferences.
Health care providers who communicate with FMS patients should employ an open and patient-centered communication style, and affective communication components should be adapted to accommodate each patient.
patient–provider communication; fibromyalgia syndrome; patient communication preferences; predictors
To evaluate the effects on physicians’ prescribing behavior and on the therapeutic outcome of non-insulin-dependent diabetes patients of substituting different generic brands of metformin.
We adopt a retrospective cohort study involving 280 type-2 diabetes patients who regularly used the outpatient services of one medical center and who had changed metformin brands five times between 2003 and 2008. The aim was to examine the effects of switching brands. The generalized estimating equation was used to determine whether drug brand switching affected patient glycated hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) levels, their prescribed daily dose, or their adherence to medication with metformin.
HbA1c levels increased from 7.91 to 8.34 throughout the study period, although it was found that brand switching did not adversely affect HbA1c levels after controlling for patient characteristics and the time course of the study. Furthermore, the prescribed daily dose of metformin was stable throughout the study period, and was approximately 0.8 of the defined daily dose. Finally, although adherence was significantly higher with the original metformin than with the four generic brands, patients still maintained high levels of adherence of >0.8.
Although switching between different brands of metformin slightly affected the prescribing behavior of the physicians, there was no unfavorable effect on patient HbA1c levels. Thus, the policy of substituting between different generic brands of metformin is a good cost-effective approach that does not adversely affect the quality of diabetes patient care.
metformin; generic substitution; glycemic control; prescribing behavior; adherence
Individuals who experience stroke have a higher likelihood of subsequent stroke events, making it imperative to plan for future medical care. In the event of a further serious health event, engaging in the process of advanced care planning (ACP) can help family members and health care professionals (HCPs) make medical decisions for individuals who have lost the capacity to do so. Few studies have explored the views and experiences of patients with stroke about discussing their wishes and preferences for future medical events, and the extent to which stroke HCPs engage in conversations around planning for such events. In this study, we sought to understand how the process of ACP unfolded between HCPs and patients post-stroke.
Patients and methods
Using grounded theory (GT) methodology, we engaged in direct observation of HCP and patient interactions on an acute stroke unit and two stroke rehabilitation units. Using semi-structured interviews, 14 patients and four HCPs were interviewed directly about the ACP process.
We found that open and continual ACP conversations were not taking place, patients experienced an apparent lack of urgency to engage in ACP, and HCPs were uncomfortable initiating ACP conversations due to the sensitive nature of the topic.
In this study, we identified lack of engagement in ACP post-stroke, attributable to patient and HCP factors. This encourages us to look further into the process of ACP in order to develop open communication between the patient with stroke, their families, and stroke HCPs.
qualitative; engagement; health care providers; palliative
Satisfaction with services represents a key component of the user’s perspective, and user satisfaction surveys are the most commonly used approach to evaluate the aforementioned perspective. The aim of this discursive paper is to provide a critical overview of user satisfaction surveys in addiction treatment and harm reduction services, with a particular focus on opioid maintenance treatment as a representative case.
We carried out a selective critical review and analysis of the literature on user satisfaction surveys in addiction treatment and harm reduction services.
Most studies that have reported results of satisfaction surveys have found that the great majority of users (virtually all, in many cases) are highly satisfied with the services received. However, when these results are compared to the findings of studies that use different methodologies to explore the patient’s perspective, the results are not as consistent as might be expected. It is not uncommon to find that “highly satisfied” patients report significant problems when mixed-methods studies are conducted. To understand this apparent contradiction, we explored two distinct (though not mutually exclusive) lines of reasoning, one of which concerns conceptual aspects and the other, methodological questions.
User satisfaction surveys, as currently designed and carried out in addiction treatment and harm reduction services, do not significantly help to improve service quality. Therefore, most of the enthusiasm and naiveté with which satisfaction surveys are currently performed and interpreted – and rarely acted on in the case of nonoptimal results – should be avoided. A truly participatory approach to program evaluation is urgently needed to reshape and transform patient satisfaction surveys.
patient satisfaction; substance abuse treatment services; harm reduction services; patient-centered evaluation; service user perspective; user involvement
To examine the preferences of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients and health professionals (HPs) for the route and frequency of administration of biologic drugs.
One hundred and seven RA patients treated with biological agents for intravenous or subcutaneous use, 35 biologic-naïve RA patients treated with a disease-modifying antirheumatic drug and 30 rheumatology HPs (physicians and nurses) were recruited from two outpatient clinics in Copenhagen, Denmark. All subjects filled out a questionnaire interrogating their choice of preferred route and frequency of administration of a biologic corresponding to current available options, given that effects, adverse effects, and financial costs were identical for the different choices. The subjects were also asked to justify their preferences. The chi-square goodness-of-fit test was used to examine the distributions over different preferences. Proportions were compared using Fisher’s exact test.
Forty-one patients were currently treated with subcutaneous self-injections at home (SCH) and 66 intravenously at the clinic (IVC). IVC was preferred by 85% of patients currently treated with IVC (P<0.0001). SCH was preferred by 71% of patients currently treated with SCH (P<0.001), by 77% of the biologic-naïve patients (P<0.01), and by 87% of HPs (P<0.0001). The proportion of patients favoring SCH was significantly higher for patients currently receiving SCH and for biologic-naïve RA patients than for those currently on IVC (P<0.0001). SCH once a month and IVC every 8 weeks were the most appealing treatment frequencies (P<0.01). The most frequent reason among patients for choosing IVC or SCH was a wish for safety, and a wish to minimize the time of transportation and treatment, respectively.
The majority of RA patients treated with biologics preferred their current route of administration. Most patients, those inexperienced with biologics, and HPs favored SCH. Low treatment frequencies were generally preferred.
biologic treatment; infusion; rheumatology; subcutaneous injection
The purpose of this study was to analyze age, geographical and seasonal variations in medical service utilization by patients with inguinal hernia in Taiwan, and the influence of herniorrhaphy on development of ipsilateral varicocele in male patients.
Between 2001 and 2008, comprehensive data on the characteristics of medical service utilization by patients with inguinal hernia was evaluated via a retrospective nationwide population-based study. Data were obtained from the National Health Insurance Research Database in Taiwan. Parameters for comparison included newly diagnosed inguinal hernia cases, number of herniorrhaphies, and incidence rates every year, number of outpatient visits for inguinal hernia, and herniorrhaphy by age, season, and area of Taiwan.
There was an average of 1,466 newly diagnosed inguinal hernia cases and 871.9 herniorrhaphies performed per year per million population during the study period. The male ratio for both newly diagnosed inguinal hernia cases and number of herniorrhaphies increased significantly by age. The number of newly diagnosed inguinal hernia cases and outpatient visits for inguinal hernia was highest during summer, followed by spring, autumn, and winter, and in the north of Taiwan, followed by the center, south, and east. Additionally, the incidence of developing ipsilateral varicocele after herniorrhaphy was low in male patients.
The number of newly diagnosed inguinal hernia cases and outpatient visits for inguinal hernia is highest during summer and lowest in eastern Taiwan. In addition, the incidence of developing ipsilateral varicocele after herniorrhaphy is higher in patients aged 10–19 years.
age; herniorrhaphy; inguinal hernia; season; varicocele
Beliefs play a crucial role in medication adherence. Interestingly, the relationship between beliefs and adherence varies when different adherence measures are used. How adherence, in turn, is related to asthma symptoms is still unclear. Our aim was to investigate the relationship between beliefs (ie, necessities and concerns) about inhaled corticosteroids (ICS) and subjectively as well as objectively measure adherence and the agreement between these measures. Further, the relationship between adherence and asthma symptoms was examined.
A total of 280 patients aged 18–80 years who filled at least two ICS prescriptions in the preceding year were recruited to complete a questionnaire. The questionnaire included the Beliefs about Medicines Questionnaire to assess necessity beliefs and concerns about ICS, four questions about ICS use to measure self-reported adherence, and the Asthma Control Questionnaire to assess asthma symptoms. Proportion of days covered was used to determine pharmacy refill adherence.
Data from 93 patients with asthma were analyzed. Necessities were positively related to self-reported adherence (P = 0.01). No other associations were found between beliefs and subjective or objective adherence. There was no correlation between self-reported and refill adherence. Participants were significantly (P < 0.001) less adherent according to self-report data (24.4%) than according to pharmacy data (57.8%). No relationship was found between adherence and asthma symptoms.
Higher necessities are associated with higher self-reported adherence, suggesting that it could be more important to focus on necessities than on concerns in an attempt to improve adherence. Self-reported and refill adherence measurements cannot be used interchangeably. No relationship between adherence and asthma symptoms was found.
asthma; inhaled corticosteroids; adherence; medication beliefs; asthma symptoms
Acromegaly is a chronic condition resulting from a growth hormone-secreting pituitary tumor that can substantially impact patients’ physical and emotional well-being. We sought to understand the impact of acromegaly on disease-related concerns and treatment choices from the patient perspective. The path to diagnosis, current disease management, interactions with the treating health care providers (HCPs), and support networks were also assessed.
Acromegaly patients were recruited primarily from a patient support group (Acromegaly Community). In Phase I, ten patients participated over the course of 5 days in a moderated online discussion board and they answered questions about their disease. In Phase II, a separate nine-patient cohort participated in face-to-face interviews conducted during an acromegaly patient conference. Data were summarized qualitatively by grouping similar answers and quotations.
Nineteen acromegaly patients were recruited across the two cohorts, and both groups shared similar concerns. They demonstrated a notable interest in understanding their disease and its treatment. Patients were focused on the impact of the disease on their life, and they expressed a desire to get beyond reminders of their disease. The patients described long journeys to a correct diagnosis and relief at having a name for their condition. Many shared a sense of shock at needing pituitary surgery and felt unsatisfied by the treatment decision process, motivating them to discuss it with other patients. Patients not connected to a patient support group reported feeling helpless and lonely. Most patients shared a desire to improve their general knowledge about acromegaly to spare others their protracted diagnostic period. Patients also reported hesitancy in asking questions or sharing details about the disease’s impact on their lives with their HCPs.
Acromegaly can be a life-changing diagnosis with profound, ongoing effects on patients’ lives. Patients struggle with many issues they fail to openly share with their HCPs, but may discuss these issues more easily with other acromegaly patients. Better collaboration between patients and care providers could lead to increased patient satisfaction.
acromegaly; impact on patients’ lives; patient perspective; somatostatin analogs
The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of nonadherence in a cohort of renal transplant recipients (RTRs) and to evaluate prospectively whether more intense clinical surveillance and reduced pill number enhanced adherence.
Patients and methods
The study was carried out in 310 stable RTRs in whom adherence, life satisfaction, and transplant care were evaluated by specific questionnaires (time 0). The patients under tacrolimus (TAC; bis in die [BID]) were then shifted to once-daily TAC (D-TAC) to reduce their pill burden (Shift group) and were followed up for 6 months to reevaluate the same parameters. Patients on cyclosporin or still on BID-TAC constituted a time-control group.
The prevalence of nonadherence was 23.5% and was associated with previous rejection episodes (P<0.002), and was inversely related to Life Satisfaction Index, anxiety, and low glomerular filtration rate (minimum P<0.03). Nonadherent patients were significantly less satisfied with their medical care and their relationships with the medical staff. A shift from BID-TAC to D-TAC was performed in 121 patients, and the questionnaires were repeated after 3 and 6 months. In the Shift group, a reduction in pill number was observed (P<0.01), associated with improved adherence after 3 and 6 months (+36%, P<0.05 versus basal), with no change in controls. Decreased TAC trough levels after 3 and 6 months (−9%), despite a slight increase in drug dosage (+6.5%), were observed in the Shift group, with no clinical side effects.
The reduced pill burden improves patients’ compliance to calcineurin-inhibitors, but major efforts in preventing nonadherence are needed.
adherence; calcineurin inhibitors; once-daily tacrolimus; renal transplant
Adolescents report high asthma-related morbidity that can be prevented by adequate self-management of the disease. Therefore, there is a need for a developmentally appropriate strategy to promote effective asthma self-management. Mobile phone-based technology is portable, commonly accessible, and well received by adolescents. The purpose of this study was to develop and evaluate the feasibility and acceptability of a comprehensive mobile phone-based asthma self-management aid for adolescents (mASMAA) that was designed to facilitate symptom monitoring, treatment adherence, and adolescent–parent partnership. The system used state-of-the-art natural language-understanding technology that allowed teens to use unconstrained English in their texts, and to self-initiate interactions with the system.
Materials and methods
mASMAA was developed based on an existing natural dialogue system that supports broad coverage of everyday natural conversation in English. Fifteen adolescent–parent dyads participated in a 2-week trial that involved adolescents’ daily scheduled and unscheduled interactions with mASMAA and parents responding to daily reports on adolescents’ asthma condition automatically generated by mASMAA. Subsequently, four focus groups were conducted to systematically obtain user feedback on the system. Frequency data on the daily usage of mASMAA over the 2-week period were tabulated, and content analysis was conducted for focus group interview data.
Response rates for daily text messages were 81%–97% in adolescents. The average number of self-initiated messages to mASMAA was 19 per adolescent. Symptoms were the most common topic of teen-initiated messages. Participants concurred that use of mASMAA improved awareness of symptoms and triggers, promoted treatment adherence and sense of control, and facilitated adolescent–parent partnerships.
This study demonstrates the utility and user acceptability of mASMAA as a potential asthma self-management tool in a selective group of adolescents. Further research is needed to replicate the findings in a large group of adolescents from sociodemographically diverse backgrounds to validate the findings.
asthma; self-management; text messaging; adolescents
Excessive growth hormone (GH) is usually secreted by GH-secreting pituitary adenomas and causes gigantism in juveniles or acromegaly in adults. The clinical complications involving cardiovascular, respiratory, and metabolic systems lead to elevated morbidity in acromegaly. Control of serum GH and insulin-like growth factor (IGF) 1 hypersecretion by surgery or pharmacotherapy can decrease morbidity. Current pharmacotherapy includes somatostatin analogs (SAs) and GH receptor antagonist; the former consists of lanreotide Autogel (ATG) and octreotide long-acting release (LAR), and the latter refers to pegvisomant. As primary medical therapy, lanreotide ATG and octreotide LAR can be supplied in a long-lasting formulation to achieve biochemical control of GH and IGF-1 by subcutaneous injection every 4–6 weeks. Lanreotide ATG and octreotide LAR provide an effective medical treatment, whether as a primary or secondary therapy, for the treatment of GH-secreting pituitary adenoma; however, to maximize benefits with the least cost, several points should be emphasized before the application of SAs. A comprehensive assessment, especially of the observation of clinical predictors and preselection of SA treatment, should be completed in advance. A treatment process lasting at least 3 months should be implemented to achieve a long-term stable blood concentration. More satisfactory surgical outcomes for noninvasive macroadenomas treated with presurgical SA may be achieved, although controversy of such adjuvant therapy exists. Combination of SA and pegvisomant or cabergoline shows advantages in some specific cases. Thus, an individual treatment program should be established for each patient under a full evaluation of the risks and benefits.
GH-secreting pituitary adenoma; somatostatin analogs; lanreotide ATG; octreotide LAR; growth hormone; insulin-like growth factor 1
There is limited information on the patterns of use, adherence rates, and factors that impact adherence with topical treatments for actinic keratosis (AK).
To establish patterns of use and adherence with topical treatments for AK and to identify treatment-related factors that impact on adherence.
A community-based, cross-sectional study was performed using a standardized questionnaire completed online or via telephone interview. Patients were stratified according to the presence of AK lesions on the scalp and/or other extremities; and presence of scarring resulting from treatment.
This study included 305 patients with AK who were currently using a patient-applied topical therapy for AK or had used one within the previous 12 months. In total, 88% (n = 268/305) of patients were either non-adherent, non-persistent or both non-adherent and non-persistent to topical therapy. Duration of treatment was associated with increasing rates of non-adherence (adjusted odds ratio [OR]; for treatment durations greater than 4 weeks, 2.2, P < 0.01): 52% of patients were non-adherent with 3–4 week treatment duration; 69% of patients with 4–8 week treatment duration; and 71% of patients with 6–12 week treatment duration. There were similar increases in non-persistence with increasing treatment duration (adjusted OR; for treatment durations greater than 4 weeks, 2.1, P < 0.05).
This study found high rates of non-adherence and non-persistence in patients with AK. Duration of treatment was a significant factor contributing to non-adherence and non-persistence to topical treatments. Patient-applied topical therapies that require less frequent application and have shorter treatment duration may be associated with improved adherence rates.
patient compliance; chronic skin disease; treatment duration; patient behavior
Vulvovaginal candidiasis (VVC) is an extremely common cause of vaginal symptoms in women. Multiple antifungal products are available by either the oral or vaginal route, although no new drugs have become available for two decades. Given the therapeutic equivalence of the antimycotic agents and their routes of administration, the specific drug and formulation selected is entirely arbitrary in relation to final treatment outcome. Nevertheless, multiple factors affecting preference, both practitioner-dependent and patient-dependent, impact on selection of a specific drug and route of administration.
antifungal drugs; antimycotics; Candida vaginitis; vulvovaginal candidiasis
In recent decades, the demand for organ transplantation has risen rapidly worldwide, due to an increased incidence of vital organ failure. However, the scarcity of organs appropriate for transplantation has led to an organ shortage crisis. This article retrospectively reviews strategies to change negative public attitudes toward organ donation in the People’s Republic of China. We strongly believe that efforts to publicize knowledge of organ donation, promote family discussions, train medical staff and students, establish incentive systems, and implement regulatory oversight may combat unfavorable Chinese public opinion toward organ donation and transplantation, thus potentially increasing the organ donation rate in the People’s Republic of China.
influencing factors; attitudes; organ transplantation; organ failure
The application of the principle of autonomy, which is considered a cornerstone of contemporary bioethics, is sometimes in obvious contradiction with the principle of beneficence. Indeed, it may happen in chronic care that the preferences of the health care provider (HCP), who is largely focused on the prevention of long term complications of diseases, differ from those, more present oriented, preferences of the patient. The aims of this narrative review are as follows: 1) to show that the exercise of autonomy by the patient is not always possible; 2) where the latter is not possible, to examine how, in the context of the autonomy principle, someone (a HCP) can decide what is good (a treatment) for someone else (a patient) without falling into paternalism. Actually this analysis leads to a paradox: not only is the principle of beneficence sometimes conflicting with the principle of autonomy, but physician’s beneficence may enter into conflict with the mere respect of the patient; and 3) to propose a solution to this paradox by revisiting the very concepts of the autonomous person, patient education, and trust in the patient–physician relationship: this article provides an ethical definition of patient education.
preference; autonomy; person; reflexivity; empathy; sympathy; patient education; trust; respect; care
Survival for patients with cystic fibrosis (CF) increased to nearly 40 years in 2012 from the early childhood years in the 1940s. Therefore, patients are living long enough to require transition from pediatric CF centers to adult CF centers. The goal of transition is for the young adult to be engaged in the adult health care system in ways that optimize health, maximize potential, and increase quality of life. A successful transition promotes autonomy and responsibility with respect to one’s own health. Currently, there is an information gap in the literature with respect to psychological models that can help guide informed transition processes. In this review, we establish the framework in which transition exists in CF; we review some of the published literature from the last 20 years of experience with transition in CF centers around the world; and we discuss psychological models of pediatric illness that can help to explain the current state of transition to adult-oriented care from pediatric-oriented care and help to formulate new models of ascertaining readiness for transition. Finally, we look at our current knowledge gaps and opportunities for future research endeavors.
cystic fibrosis; transition; adolescent; social-ecological model of AYA readiness for transition; SMART
Hospitalization contributes enormously to health care costs associated with heart failure. Many investigators have attempted to predict hospitalization in these patients. None of these models has been highly effective in prediction, suggesting that important risk factors remain unidentified.
To assess prospectively collected medication adherence, objectively measured by the Medication Event Monitoring System, as a predictor of hospitalization in heart failure patients.
Materials and methods
We used recently developed adaptive modeling methods to describe patterns of medication adherence in a sample of heart failure patients, and tested the hypothesis that poor medication adherence as determined by adaptive methods was a significant predictor of hospitalization within 6 months.
Medication adherence was the best predictor of hospitalization. Besides two dimensions of poor adherence (adherence pattern type and low percentage of prescribed doses taken), four other single factors predicted hospitalization: low hemoglobin, depressed ejection fraction, New York Heart Association class IV, and 12 or more medications taken daily. Seven interactions increased the predictive capability of the model: 1) pattern of poor adherence type and lower score on the Letter–Number Sequencing test, a measure of short-term memory; 2) higher number of comorbid conditions and higher number of daily medications; 3) higher blood urea nitrogen and lower percentage of prescribed doses taken; 4) lower hemoglobin and much worse perceived health compared to last year; 5) older age and lower score on the Telephone Interview of Cognitive Status; 6) higher body mass index and lower hemoglobin; and 7) lower ejection fraction and higher fatigue. Patients with none of these seven interactions had a hospitalization rate of 9.7%. For those with five of these interaction risk factors, 100% were hospitalized. The C-index (the area under the receiver-operating characteristics [ROC] curve) for the model based on the seven interactions was 0.83, indicating excellent discrimination.
Medication adherence adds important new information to the list of variables previously shown to predict hospitalization in adults with heart failure.
heart failure; outcomes; hospitalization; patient compliance; medication adherence; self-care
Contraceptives are one of the most cost effective public health interventions. An understanding of the factors influencing users’ preferences for contraceptives sources, in addition to their preferred methods of contraception, is an important factor in increasing contraceptive uptake. This study investigates the effect of women’s contextual and individual socioeconomic positions on their preference for contraceptive sources among current users in Nigeria.
A multilevel modeling analysis was conducted using the most recent 2008 Nigerian Demographic and Health Surveys data of women aged between 15 and 49 years old. The analysis included 1,834 ever married women from 888 communities across the 36 states of the federation, including the Federal Capital Territory of Abuja. Three outcome variables, private, public, and informal provisions of contraceptive sources, were considered in the modeling.
There was variability in women’s preferences for providers across communities. The result shows that change in variance accounted for about 31% and 19% in the odds of women’s preferences for both private and public providers across communities. Younger age and being from the richest households are strongly associated with preference for both private and public providers. Living in rural areas and economically deprived neighborhoods were the community level determinants of women’s preferences.
This study documents the independent association of contextual socioeconomic characteristics and individual level socioeconomic factors with women’s preferences for contraceptive commodity providers in Nigeria. Initiatives that seek to improve modern contraceptive uptake should jointly consider users’ preferences for sources of these commodities in addition to their preference for contraceptive type.
abortion; contraceptive; multilevel choice; Nigeria; preference; socioeconomic disadvantaged
Human serum albumin (HSA) is an ideal natural colloid that has been widely used in clinical practice for supplemental albumin or as a plasma substitute during therapeutic plasma exchanges to redress hypoproteinemia. However, a paucity of well-designed clinical trials, a lack of a clear cut survival benefit, and frequent case reports of adverse drug reaction (ADR) make the use of HSA controversial. This study aims to review and to comment on the reported ADRs of HSA in the People’s Republic of China, so as to provide the basis for rational HSA use in clinical settings. Data on the ADR case reports from HSA administration between January 1990 and December 2012 available from the China National Knowledge Infrastructure (CNKI) database, Wanfang data (WF), and Chinese Biomedical Literature (CBM) were reviewed. The reasons for using HSA, the types of ADRs, the causality of ADRs and the rationality for HSA administration were extracted and analyzed. In total, 61 cases of ADR reports were identified of which the primary disease of patients using HSA was malignant tumor (34.42%). The primary ADR was anaphylaxis (59.02%). Of the 61 cases, 30 were caused by irrational use of HSA. The most common irrational use was off-label use (56.67%), followed by inappropriate infusion rate. Therefore, we conclude that to avoid the occurrence of ADRs, guidelines for using HSA are needed to guarantee its rational use and HSA should be used strictly according to these guidelines. In addition, medical staff, including clinical pharmacists and nurses, should pay more attention to the patients who inject HSA to ensure its safe use in the clinic.
HSA; off-label use; ADR; plasma substitute; albumin; hypoproteinemia
The purpose of this study was to evaluate preferences for oral versus intravenous adjuvant chemotherapy among early breast cancer patients (UMIN-CTR number UMIN000004696).
Patients and methods
Eighty-two postmenopausal women with estrogen receptor-positive, human epidermal growth-factor receptor 2-negative breast cancer who had completed adjuvant chemotherapy were asked about their preferred route of administration of chemotherapy and the reason. Women also answered questions about their physical and psychological status and quality of life during chemotherapy.
Patients who had received oral chemotherapy preferred it more frequently than those who had received intravenous chemotherapy (100% versus 37%, respectively, chi-square =15.5; P<0.001). Patients who preferred the same route of administration of chemotherapy as they had previously received showed a significantly better psychological status during chemotherapy compared with those who preferred a different route.
Our study showed that preferences for oral and intravenous chemotherapy strongly depended on the actual prior administration of chemotherapy and patients’ own experiences during chemotherapy.
breast cancer; adjuvant; chemotherapy; patient preference; oral; intravenous
Background and aims
Clinical lumbar instability causes pain and socioeconomic suffering; however, an appropriate treatment for this condition is unknown. This article examines the effect of a 10 week core stabilization exercise (CSE) program and 3 month follow-up on pain-related outcomes in patients with clinical lumbar instability.
Forty-two participants with clinical lumbar instability of at least 3 months in duration were randomly allocated either to 10 weekly treatments with CSE or to a conventional group (CG) receiving trunk stretching exercises and hot pack. Pain-related outcomes including pain intensity during instability catch sign, functional disability, patient satisfaction, and health-related quality of life were measured at 10 weeks of intervention and 1 and 3 months after the last intervention session (follow-up); trunk muscle activation patterns measured by surface electromyography were measured at 10 weeks.
CSE showed significantly greater reductions in all pain-related outcomes after 10 weeks and over the course of 3 month follow-up periods than those seen in the CG (P<0.01). Furthermore, CSE enhanced deep abdominal muscle activation better than in the CG (P<0.001), whereas the CG had deterioration of deep back muscle activation compared with the CSE group (P<0.01). For within-group comparison, CSE provided significant improvements in all pain-related outcomes over follow-up (P<0.01), whereas the CG demonstrated reduction in pain intensity during instability catch sign only at 10 weeks (P<0.01). In addition, CSE showed an improvement in deep abdominal muscle activation (P<0.01), whereas the CG revealed the deterioration of deep abdominal and back muscle activations (P<0.05).
Ten week CSE provides greater training and retention effects on pain-related outcomes and induced activation of deep abdominal muscles in patients with clinical lumbar instability compared with conventional treatment.
clinical lumbar instability; quality of life; detraining effect; trunk muscle activation; core stabilization exercise