Medication non-compliance is an ignored health problem in developing countries, which have an alarming average of less than 50% of patients complying with medication instructions. Such non-compliance is considered a major challenge to effective management of most chronic diseases such as diabetes mellitus, hypertension, and dyslipidemia. Objective: To evaluate the factors affecting patient compliance and the impact of better compliance on the control of chronic diseases. Another objective is to measure the prevalence of intentional and non-intentional non compliance and their causes. Method: A cross-sectional study was conducted for 240 patients with chronic diseases who are followed up at Al-Qassimi Hospital, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates (ARE) during the period of September 2008 until March 2009. The hospital ethical committee approval was obtained before the commencement of the study. A validated data collection form and questionnaire were used to collect patients' demographics, degree of knowledge about their medications and concurrent diseases. Patients were selected based on inclusion and exclusion criteria which include chronic diseased adult patients who have one or more of the following chronic conditions (Diabetes, hypertension and/or dyslipidemia) confirmed in the patients' medical file (not on their initial diagnosis). Participants should have an active prescription without changes for at least 90 days at the time of study recruitment. Descriptive statistics were reported and statistical analysis using SPSS software version 18 was done to correlate patient demographics and patient compliance and to measure the correlation of patient compliance and the control of chronic diseases using chi square test. Results: The mean age of participants was 56.6 ± 12.4 years. Most of participants were illiterate (62.5%). Most of them had family history with chronic disease (69.2%). Most patients have more than one chronic disease (86.7%). More than three quarters of participants (77.5%) do not control one or more of their diseases. Also high percentage of participants (76.7%) was on polypharmacy regimen (mean number of drug used 7.0 ± 3.0). The most prominent complication related to chronic diseases that participants suffered from is cardiovascular diseases (27.6%). Forgetfulness is the main reason for non-intentional non-compliance (75%), while polypharmacy was considered the main causes for intentional non-compliance (13.3%). The current study revealed that there is significant association between patients' young age, having family member with chronic disease, having complications and good compliance (p-value < 0.05). Also, there is a statistically significant association between good compliance and better achievement of chronic diseases control (p-value < 0.05). It was also found that level of education and number of chronic diseases have no correlation with compliance (P-value > 0.05) Conclusion: Medication compliance is very important to control chronic diseases such as diabetes mellitus, hypertension and/or dyslipidemia and decrease their complications. Results of the study showed that there is a positive association between good compliance and achievement of better control of chronic diseases. The current study also revealed that there is significant association between patients' young age, having family member with chronic disease, having complications and good medication compliance.
|Journal||Asian Journal of Pharmaceutical and Clinical Research|