Adherence and Decision Aids: A Model and a Narrative Review

Department of Radiation Oncology, Department of Epidemiology, Biostatistics and HTA, Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Center, Nijmegen, The Netherlands.
Medical Decision Making (Impact Factor: 2.27). 02/2010; 31(1):121-9. DOI: 10.1177/0272989X10370487
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Patient adherence to medication or lifestyle interventions is a serious concern. Interventions to improve adherence exist, but their effects are usually small. Several authors suggested that decision aids may positively affect adherence.
. This presentation examines the role of decision aids in adherence research through development of a model and a narrative review.
. I: A model was developed to organize pathways relating decision aids and adherence. There is clinical evidence for these pathways, suggesting that decision aids may potentially improve adherence. The model is helpful when considering measures to study decision aids and adherence. II: A narrative review of decision aids and adherence was done. A systematic search resulted in 11 randomized studies. Two studies, both in the hypertension management domain, were positive. Shortcomings were identified regarding the range of adherence measures, the sample size, and the
It is argued that outcomes for the option "nonadherent" behavior should be described explicitly in the decision aid to inform patients about the costs and benefits of nonadherent behavior.
. A relation between decision aids and adherence is plausible in view of the psychological and medical literature. A systematic search showed that experimental evidence relating decision aids and adherence is inconclusive. Rigorous trials on this topic are worthwhile. Such trials should employ adequate sample sizes, multiple adherence measures, and a control arm delivering usual care. The decision aid should describe the option "being nonadherent" and its outcomes.

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