The predictors of and reasons for non-adherence in an observational cohort of patients with rheumatoid arthritis commencing methotrexate.

Rheumatology (Oxford) 2019 Jul 13. Epub 2019 Jul 13.

NIHR Biomedical Research Centre, Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust, Manchester Academic Health Science Centre, University of Manchester, Manchester, UK.

Objective: In order to develop interventions to optimize MTX use for the treatment of RA we evaluated the rate of, reasons for and predictors of MTX non-adherence during the first 6 months of therapy.

Methods: The Rheumatoid Arthritis Medication Study (RAMS) is a prospective multicentre cohort study of incident MTX users in the UK. Prior to MTX commencement demographic, clinical and psychological data were collected. A weekly patient-completed diary recorded MTX dose, possible side effects and adherence over 26 weeks. The number of non-adherent weeks was calculated. Potential baseline predictors of ever non-adherence (⩾1 week non-adherent) during the first 6 months of MTX therapy were identified using logistic regression analyses.

Results: 606 patients with RA were included; 69% female, mean (s.d.) age 60 (13) years and DAS28 score 4.2 (1.2). Over the first 6 months following MTX initiation, 158 (26%) patients were ever non-adherent (71% intentional, 19% non-intentional, 10% unexplained) and mean (s.d.) number of non-adherent weeks was 2.5 (2.1). Multivariable predictors of ever non-adherence included DAS28 [odds ratios (OR) 1.1, 95% CI 1.0, 1.4], fatigue (OR 1.1, 95% CI 1.0, 1.2 per cm), ⩾2 comorbidities vs no comorbidities (OR 1.9, 95% CI 1.1, 3.5) and high medication concerns despite perceived need (OR 1.1, 95% CI 1.0, 1.1 per unit decrease in need/concern differential).

Conclusion: This is the largest study evaluating early intentional and non-intentional non-adherence to MTX, which has identified that patient beliefs and multi-morbidity strongly link with non-adherence. These findings can direct the design of and provide potential targets for interventions to improve patient adherence.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/rheumatology/kez274DOI Listing
July 2019
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