In order to come to this conclusion, the researchers conducted a survey that involved 143 patients who suffered from a several types of acne. After thorough analysis, the study revealed that 27% of the acne patients did not use the prescription or the over-the-counter medication they were prescribed by the doctors.
Dr. Steven Feldman is a professor of dermatology at the Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center in Winston-Salem, North Carolina and the lead researcher of this study. He explained that non –adherence to the treatment is actually a common problem in all fields of medicine, especially in dermatology. There are many people who suffer from chronic skin conditions like acne who will not stick to a prescribed treatment.
Dr. Feldman said that previous studies have shown that approximately 10% of the acne patients are not taking their medication as prescribed to them by the dermatologist.
He added that his latest study reveals the number of those who won’t the acne treatment is actually double.
According to this study, patients who were given two types of medications for their acne were likely to not purchase it or use it. The researchers found that 40% of the patients do this, while 31% of the patients who were prescribed three or more medications will not take them.
The study also found that 9% of those who had to take only one medication for treating the acne failed to do it.
The scientists found that factors like age or gender did not influence the fact that the acne patients refused to follow the treatments they were given by the dermatologist.
According to the study, the participants involved in the research were less likely to fill the prescription for topical medication like lotions and creams, compared to prescription for acne pills.
Also, the new study suggests that the patients were more likely to obtain prescription drugs than over-the-counter medication for the treatment of acne.
The researchers found that electronic prescriptions are more common than paper ones.
Dr. Feldman pointed out the fact that according to his study, people are more likely to follow the treatment given by the dermatologist if it involves only one type of medication.
Feldman added that:
“Multiple agents are typically required to address the multiple factors that cause acne, but simplifying treatment regimens by prescribing products that contain two or more active ingredients could prove effective in reducing non-adherence.”
The new study did not examine the reason behind why acne patients won’t get their prescriptions filled. However, the majority of the participants involved in the study said that some of the reasons why they fail to get their prescription filled had to do with lack of finances and the fact that they usually forget to go buy or take them.
Some of the patients who suffer from acne invoked the reasons that they usually have the same medicine at home so they won’t bother to purchase it again, while others said that they don’t get the prescriptions filled since they don’t believe what the doctors gave them will improve their acne conditions.
But the researchers say that acne patients are not the only ones who often fail to take their medication.
Previous studies suggest that many patients who suffer from chronic conditions fail to fill the prescriptions for their treatment.
Feldman believes that non-adherence is actually a pervasive concern in every medicine field.
For example, patients who suffer from chronic conditions like diabetes will not always take their medication.
Research shows that the reasons for this include the duration of the treatment, the cost of it and how sever the condition is.
However, according to a study conducted in 2014 by a team of scientists from Queen Mary University of London, an effective method to increase the patients’ adherence to their treatments is by using text messages.
That study showed that patients who received alerts in the form of a text message were 16% more likely to follow their treatment and take their medications.
Recent statistics suggest that approximately 60 million Americans suffer from an active form of acne.
The statistics show that 85% of them are teenagers while 20% are adults.
Approximately 1/3 of those who suffer from acne have a severe case that will leave them with scars, but only 10% of them will go to see a dermatologist for help.
Most of the patients who suffer from a severe case of acne will either buy over-the-counter medication without going to the doctor or will leave things as they are, without seeking any professional help.
The researchers published the findings of their new study in the medical journal called JAMA Dermatology. The study was published online on March 20.
Image Source: ehealthmd
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