Navigation Links
Better instructions reduce complications among patients using common blood thinner
Date:10/27/2008

PHILADELPHIA Patients who report receiving written and verbal instructions on the proper way to take the blood thinner warfarin are significantly less likely to suffer the serious gastrointestinal and brain bleeding problems that are associated with misuse of the drug, according to new research from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. The study, published in the October issue Journal of General Internal Medicine, also shows that patients who see only one physician and fill their prescription at a single pharmacy are less apt to experience serious bleeding events.

Lead author Joshua P. Metlay, MD, PhD, an Associate Professor in Penn's division of General Internal Medicine and a Senior Scholar in the Center for Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, found that patients who reported receiving medication instructions from a physician and a nurse plus a pharmacy worker were 60 percent less likely to experience a serious bleeding problem over the following two years. Since the serious side effects of warfarin use are often linked to hospitalizations, the Penn researchers theorize that improved patient communication -- which can help clarify questions about dosing, other drugs to avoid while taking warfarin, and early symptoms of bleeding problems -- could prevent a substantial number of injuries and resulting hospitalizations.

"While we do not know the specific mechanism linking the medication instructions to reduce bleeding risk, it is likely that improved communication about medications leads to increased drug adherence and earlier recognition of medication side effects," Metlay says.

Metlay's team, in collaboration with the Pennsylvania Pharmaceutical Assistance Contract for the Elderly (PACE), studied 2,346 older adults taking warfarin for problems including heart rhythm abnormalities, deep vein thrombosis, stroke, heart valve replacements or pulmonary embolism. Using data provided by the Pennsylvania Healthcare Cost Containment Council, the researchers identified hospitalizations that were tied to warfarin-related bleeding events among the patients in the study.

The findings also indicate that the way patients receive instruction about their medicine matters. Compared to receiving no instructions beyond those printed on the prescription bottle, patients who said they had been given written information or written information plus verbal instructions were less apt to suffer bleeding events. Reports of verbal instruction alone, however, were not associated with a decreased risk of bleeding problems compared to patients who received no instructions. The Penn researchers say the findings underscore previous studies showing that thorough, honest communication between health care providers and patients is an important contributor to compliance with recommended therapies.

Since only 55 percent of participants in the study reported receiving any type of medication instructions from a doctor or nurse, Metlay and his colleagues say the impact on bleeding events among warfarin users could be slashed further if similar communication models were adopted more widely by physicians and pharmacists. New regulations requiring that all patients filling warfarin prescriptions receive a Medication Guide could help, and since pharmacists are now able to be reimbursed for time spent providing medication counseling to Medicare recipients, the authors are hopeful more patients will get helpful information about this drug.

The new research may also have implications for the broader health care community. While warfarin is one of the highest risk drugs routinely used in ambulatory care, these findings point to ways to improve provider-patient communication in ways that would better drug adherence and patient safety for many other medications and chronic medical conditions.

"It is time that we recognize that patients and their caregivers bear a substantial burden in managing increasingly complex medical regimens and require more guidance in this area," Metlay says.


'/>"/>

Contact: Holly Auer
holly.auer@uphs.upenn.edu
215-349-5659
University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Conventional prognostic factors fail to explain better prostate cancer survival in most Asian men
2. Waist-to-hip ratio may better predict cardiovascular risk than body mass index
3. Informational handout key to giving parents a better understanding of CT radiation risks
4. Children of depressed moms do better when dad is involved, SLU researcher finds
5. Struggling male readers respond better to female teachers
6. Physician Skin Care Specialist Says Proposed New Rules for Sunscreen Products Will Better Protect the Public
7. Mothers Know Best: NFL Moms Team With Eddie George to Showcase a Better Way to a Healthier Lifestyle
8. Researchers Find Better Way to Deliver Blood Thinner
9. Clinical trials present better alternatives for dialysis patients
10. New nurses report job stress, need for better management
11. Hispanics hypertension better controlled with equal access to care
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/24/2017)... ... June 24, 2017 , ... The Pennsylvania ... Sheraton Erie Bayfront and Erie Convention Center on June 8-10. The weekend ... student quiz bowl, award and scholarship presentations, and professional networking. , On ...
(Date:6/24/2017)... ... June 24, 2017 , ... Doorknobs are for convenience, deadbolts ... as getting a guard dog or having an alarm system installed. But unless there ... forced entry. Yair Frenkel, owner of TX Premier Locksmith in Killeen, TX says: “In ...
(Date:6/23/2017)... CA (PRWEB) , ... June 23, 2017 , ... By ... earned its ninth consecutive four-star rating from premier online charity evaluator, Charity Navigator, validating ... the top 1% of all charities reviewed by Charity Navigator and earns ANRF a ...
(Date:6/23/2017)... , ... June 23, 2017 , ... The Military Officers ... nominee for deputy secretary of Veterans Affairs, retired Marine Col. Thomas G. Bowman. , ... , Bowman brings an intimacy with the issues and challenges veterans face ...
(Date:6/23/2017)... ... , ... Everybody has their own personal preference when it comes to pornography. ... people don't like it at all. FindaTopDoc took a look at what makes people ... give readers a taste of their deepest, darkest fantasies and has the ability to ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:5/30/2017)... Israel , May 30, 2017 DarioHealth Corp. (NASDAQ: ... big data solutions, today announced that it will be presenting at ... at 8:00 AM PT. Erez Raphael , CEO, of DarioHealth ... The conference will be held on June 6th & 7th, 2017 ... companies in the small / micro-cap space. ...
(Date:5/29/2017)... May 29, 2017  Cellect Biotechnology Ltd. (NASDAQ: ... which enables the functional selection of stem cells, today ... the first quarter ended March 31 st , 2017. ... accomplishments in the first quarter of 2017," said Dr. ... we announced the treatment of the first blood cancer ...
(Date:5/24/2017)... 2017  ivWatch LLC today announced the launch ... to enable seamless integration of ivWatch,s groundbreaking IV ... pumps and other devices. By integrating ivWatch technology ... help health care customers deliver a higher level ... IV therapy. "The ivWatch OEM Board ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: