Objective: Medication nonadherence is one of the most important, and potentially modifiable, prognostic factors in the outcome of patients with schizophrenia. The aim of this article is to propose a new classification of adherence profiles according to the Medication Adherence Rating Scale (MARS) in a large community-dwelling sample of French patients with schizophrenia to provide a new tool to help clinicians in daily practice.
Methods: 319 community-dwelling patients from a national network of 10 Schizophrenia Expert Centers were interviewed between January 2009 and January 2014. Assessments were conducted with a dedicated electronic medical record including the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV Disorders. A cluster analysis was performed to explore clinical variables associated with poor adherence.
Results: Two distinct groups of patients were identified relative to their main adherence style. Items about medications' subjective negative effects constituted the greatest discriminating factor between the 2 clusters. Patients with poor adherence (n = 117) were significantly younger (adjusted OR [aOR] = 1.036; 95% CI, 1.004-1.069) and had higher levels of current depression (aOR = 0.894; 95% CI, 0.829-0.964) and lower insight (aOR = 0.820; 95% CI, 0.693-0.970).
Conclusions: The MARS provides a useful tool for clinicians and can also aid in the evaluation of adherence styles and their determinants in patients with schizophrenia. The element providing the greatest discriminative power between the 2 clusters was a subjective negative attitude toward medication. The findings also suggest that depression is more frequent in schizophrenia patients with poor adherence and that improving insight into illness might be suggested as a first-line intervention to improve adherence in this population.
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