Adherence to Long-Term Therapies - Evidence for Action
(2003; 211 pages) View the PDF document
Table of Contents
View the documentPreface
View the documentAcknowledgements
View the documentScientific writers
View the documentIntroduction
View the documentTake-home messages
Open this folder and view contentsSection I - Setting the scene
Open this folder and view contentsSection II - Improving adherence rates: guidance for countries
Close this folderSection III - Disease-Specific Reviews
Open this folder and view contentsChapter VII - Asthma
Open this folder and view contentsChapter VIII - Cancer (Palliative care)
Open this folder and view contentsChapter IX - Depression
Open this folder and view contentsChapter X - Diabetes
Close this folderChapter XI - Epilepsy
View the document1. Introduction
View the document2. Adherence to epilepsy therapy
View the document3. Epidemiology of adherence
View the document4. Factors affecting adherence and interventions used to improve it
View the document5. Conclusions
View the document6. References
Open this folder and view contentsChapter XII - Human immunodeficiency virus and acquired immunodeficiency syndrome
Open this folder and view contentsChapter XIII - Hypertension
Open this folder and view contentsChapter XIV - Tobacco smoking cessation
Open this folder and view contentsChapter XV - Tuberculosis
Open this folder and view contentsAnnexes
Open this folder and view contentsWhere to find a copy of this book
 

5. Conclusions

Poor adherence to drug therapy is one of the primary causes of treatment failure.

Forgetfulness of patients that may or may not be linked to memory difficulties, refusal to take medication and side-effects are the factors most commonly associated with decreased adherence. The impact of epilepsy and the side-effects of its treatment on cognition and of limited or compromised cognition on adherence deserve more attention.

The use of memory aids, linking doses to events in the patient's daily schedule or watch alarms, calendar packs, pill cases or specialized dose dispensers may be helpful tools to increase adherence to treatment in patients who regularly forget to take their AEDs. However, no studies demonstrating this were found in the literature search.

Communication with the patient about medication regimens and the value of treatment is extremely important. It can facilitate the identification of problems and barriers to adequate adherence, and help with treatment planning. Also a real partnership between the physician and the patient is needed to set and achieve goals related to treatment outcomes and adherence.

More research on adherence to anti-epileptic therapies is required to:

- deepen our understanding of the epidemiology of adherence;
- provide clear and consistent definitions of adherence;
- evaluate interventions to improve adherence; and
- collect data on adherence in developing countries.

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