Objective: To assess longterm compliance in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) of 20 mg tenoxicam or 500-1000 mg naproxen taken daily and to evaluate patient computer data collection.
Methods: Three hundred and seven patients were treated in a double blind, randomized multicenter study for 6 months. The first 4 weeks of treatment data were collected daily via patient operated computers in parallel with standard assessment at weekly visits to the clinics.
Results: Daily patient data collection was more sensitive than weekly clinical assessments. Six months' compliance was 62% for tenoxicam and 67% for naproxen with comparable rates of withdrawal due to lack of efficacy or adverse drug experiences in both groups. The spectra of adverse drug events found were very similar for both drugs but the rates were higher than in short term studies.
Conclusion: Daily computer data collection by patients is superior to classical clinical evaluation in drug studies. The longterm compliance of tenoxicam and naproxen are comparable when treating patients with RA.