Adherence to anti-osteoporotic therapies: role and determinants of "spot therapy"
Osteoporos Int. 2013 Feb 12.
Tafaro L, Nati G, Leoni E, Baldini R, Cattaruzza MS, Mei M, Falaschi P.
Geriatric Unit, Sant'Andrea Hospital, Sapienza University of Rome, via di Grottarossa No. 1035, 00189, Rome, Italy.
A successful therapy needs high level of adherence consisting in right drug intake in terms of persistence and compliance. Our study suggests adherence is higher if spot (less than 30 days) therapies are excluded; the analysis of spot therapy causes underlines the importance of the interpersonal aspects of medical practice.
INTRODUCTION: A successful therapy needs a high level of adherence consisting in right drug intake in terms of persistence and compliance. The aim of this study was to evaluate anti-osteoporotic therapies recorded in general practitioner databases in the area of Rome, which used the same computerized medical record management. The study focused on evaluating therapy adherence, any adherence changes excluding spot therapies (less than 30 days), and any cause of early therapy discontinuation in a subgroup of patients randomly selected.
METHODS: Thirty-one databases were evaluated, including a total of 6,390 anti-osteoporotic therapies: 5,853 were prescribed to women and 537 to men. T
he prescribed drugs were:
- vitamin D (13 %),
- calcium (8.7 %),
- vitamin D + calcium (40.1 %),
- raloxifene (3.3 %),
- alendronate (16.4 %),
- risedronate (7.7 %),
- clodronate (10.4 %), or
- other drugs (0.4 %).
Spot therapies represented 53.7 % of the total prescriptions. The difference between adherence in the total group (24.64 %) and the group excluding spot therapies (43.38 %) is significant. The main factors influencing low adherence were side effects (27 %), misinformation given by the physician (17 %), insufficient motivation (9 %), difficult intake (9 %), and no perceived benefits (9 %).
RESULTS: Our study suggests adherence is high and similar to other chronic diseases if spot therapies are excluded. The analysis of spot therapy causes suggests that an important role is played by the physician and the interpersonal aspects of medical practice, especially at the first prescriptions.
CONCLUSIONS: The physician should collaborate with patients in choosing a personalized medical treatment. Reducing spot therapy could be the real goal in order to improve anti-osteoporotic therapy adherence.