Navigation Links
Doctor-patient communication about dietary supplements could use a vitamin boost
Date:7/1/2013

Vitamins, minerals, herbs and other dietary supplements are widely available in supermarkets and drug stores across the nation without a prescription, so it's no surprise that nearly half of all Americans take them.

But they do carry risks, including potentially adverse interactions with prescription drugs, and some people may even use them in place of conventional medications. So it's important that primary care physicians communicate the pros and cons of supplements with their patients. In fact, both the Food and Drug Administration and the National Institutes of Health suggest that patients consult with their doctors before starting to take them.

A new UCLA-led study currently available in the journal Patient Education and Counseling examined the content of doctorpatient conversations about dietary supplements and found that, overall, physicians are not particularly good at conveying important information concerning them.

"This is the first study to look at the actual content of conversations about dietary supplements in a primary care setting," said Dr. Derjung Tarn, an assistant professor of family medicine at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA and the study's primary investigator. "The bottom line was that discussions about meaningful topics such as risks, effectiveness and costs that might inform patient decisions about taking dietary supplements were sparse."

The researchers analyzed transcripts of audio recordings from office visits by 1,477 patients to 102 primary care providers. The data were collected in three separate studies conducted between 1998 and 2010. Of those visits, 357 included patientphysician discussions of 738 dietary supplements. The team found that five major topics were discussed with regard to the supplements: the reason for taking the supplements, how to take them, their potential risks, their effectiveness, and their cost or affordability.

For scoring, the researchers used the Supplement Communication Index (SCI), which is calculated by giving one point for discussion of each of the five major topics.

Among the findings:

  • Less than 25 percent of the five major topics fewer than two on average were discussed during the office visits.
  • All five topics were covered during discussions of only six of the 738 supplements.
  • None of the five major topics were discussed for 281 of the supplements patients told their physicians they were taking.
  • SCI scores were significantly higher for discussions of non-vitamin, non-mineral supplements such as herbs, compared with those about vitamins and minerals. The former have a greater potential for adverse medicationsupplement interactions than the latter.

The researchers pointed out that since the original studies did not focus specifically on dietary supplements, they could not ascertain how many of the 1,477 patients from the three studies were actually taking them. The researchers also did not have information about the patients' medications or medical conditions, so they could not assess if patients were at risk for interactions.

But given these supplements' popularity, easy availability and potential risks, more should be done to improve physician communication about them, the researchers said.

"Future studies should examine the relationship between physicianpatient discussions on patient decision-making about dietary supplements, and investigate whether discussions are effective for preventing adverse events and supplementdrug interactions," the researchers write. "A better understanding about these relationships could inform future interventions to enhance physicianpatient communication about dietary supplements."


'/>"/>

Contact: Enrique Rivero
erivero@mednet.ucla.edu
310-794-2273
University of California - Los Angeles Health Sciences
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Doctor-Patient Communication Key to Sticking With Meds
2. Grateful patient philanthropy and the doctor-patient relationship
3. A stronger doctor-patient relationship for the costliest patients
4. Dialogic Wins American Technology Award for Telecommunications
5. Sensual Power Words: Review of Nick Richards' Communication Secrets Released
6. Tabor Communications Further Strengthens its Digital Marketing Strategy
7. Cancer Support Community Releases Cost of Care Communication Data at ASCO Conference
8. X-Factor Communications Welcomes James Sheehan as VP of Product Development
9. NetPlus Educates on how Telecommunications Management Software Can Save Customers on Operations & Maintenance Costs in the Midst of Sequestration
10. New vRating™ Video and Unified Communications Scoring System Delivers Innovative Approach to Measure Performance and ROI for Collaboration Networks
11. BroadConnect’s Latest Video Solution Sets Aimed at Providing Technical Insights for Businesses Hoping to Gain Greater Returns from their Investment in Communication and Security Solutions
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/25/2016)... , ... June 25, 2016 , ... "With 30 hand-drawn ... specific project," said Christina Austin - CEO of Pixel Film Studios. , ProHand ... all within Final Cut Pro X . Simply select a ProHand generator and ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... Montreal, Canada (PRWEB) , ... June 25, 2016 , ... ... the pursuit of success. In terms of the latter, setting the bar too high ... low, risk more than just slow progress toward their goal. , Research from ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... Texas (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... International Conference and Scientific Sessions in Dallas that it will receive two significant ... of the grants came as PHA marked its 25th anniversary by recognizing patients, ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... , ... June 24, 2016 , ... People across the ... Genome magazine’s Code Talker Award, an essay contest in which patients and their families ... to be presented at the 2016 National Society of Genetic Counselors (NSGC) Annual Education ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... ... National recruitment firm Slone Partners is pleased to announce the ... as Vice President of North American Capital Sales at HTG Molecular . ... team in the commercialization of the HTG EdgeSeq system and associated reagents in North ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... 24, 2016   Bay Area Lyme Foundation ... Dean Center for Tick Borne Illness , Harvard ... MIT Hacking Medicine, University of California, Berkeley, and ... the five finalists of Lyme Innovation , ... than 100 scientists, clinicians, researchers, entrepreneurs, and investors ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... SAN CLEMENTE, Calif. , June 24, 2016  American Respiratory ... testing company, is now able to perform sophisticated lung assessments in ... Medical Technologies , Inc. Patients are no longer ... to ndd,s EasyOne PRO ® , ARL patients like Jeanne R. ... testing done in the comfort of her own home. ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... , June 24, 2016  Arkis BioSciences, ... less invasive and more durable cerebrospinal fluid treatments, ... funding.  The Series-A funding is led by Innova ... Fund, and other private investors.  Arkis, new financing ... instrumentation and the market release of its in-licensed ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: