All posts related to "medication"

The cost of non-adherence to prescribed medications

Pills and needles to portray medication nonadherenceAn article published in the Annals of Internal Medicine estimated that non-adherence resulted in approximately 125,000 deaths and at least 10 percent of hospitalizations, costing US health care system $100 and $289 billion a year.

The article reports that “studies have consistently shown that 20 percent to 30 percent of medication prescriptions are never filled, and that approximately 50 percent of medications for chronic diseases are not taken as prescribed. The review found that for people who do take prescription medications, they only take about half the prescribed doses.

Researchers from Northwestern University found that one-third of kidney transplant patients don’t take their anti-rejection medications. Other studies show that 41 percent of heart attack patients don’t take their blood pressure medications and only 50 percent of children with asthma use their inhalers as prescribed.

In an article in the New York Times, Dr. Bruce Bender, co-director of the Centre for Health Promotion at National Jewish Health in Denver, explained: “When people don’t take the medications prescribed for them, emergency department visits and hospitalizations increase and more people die. Non-adherence is a huge problem, and there’s no one solution because there are many different reasons why it happens.”

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JointHealth™ insight – Medications Guide Edition, June 2016

State of Arthritis Medications: Some old, some new, all important

JointHealth Meds Slide for 2016The reliable, quick reference arthritis medications guide you need to assist you and your health care team with your therapy conversations.

The JointHealth™ Medications Guide gives you information on the most commonly prescribed medications for inflammatory types of arthritis and osteoarthritis. Medication information for the following diseases is included in this year’s guide: rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, juvenile arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus, vasculitis, osteoarthritis, and osteoporosis.

In this JointHealth™ insight, you will also find:

  • An explanation of the naming changes in the different categories of
    arthritis medications
  • Insight into the patient-physician therapy conversation by Cheryl Koehn, Founder and President of Arthritis Consumer Experts
  • Updated disease information for rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, juvenile arthritis, and lupus
  • The latest research on methotrexate and the consumption of alcoholic beverages

 

Biomarker tests to help detect rheumatoid arthritis

hand holding test vialTreating rheumatoid arthritis (RA) early and aggressively is vitally important and can help to prevent crippling joint damage. Today specialists recommend a treatment plan that includes education, medication-often a combination of several different types of medication will be used in a person’s treatment plan-social support, appropriate amounts of range-of-motion, cardiovascular and muscle strengthening exercises, rest, vitamins and mineral supplements and a well-balanced diet. Biomarker tests may also help to detect RA and prevent further joint damage.

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AS it Goes – Bridging the Patient-Doctor Divide

The doctor is listeningA checkup appointment at my rheumatologist (doctor who specializes in arthritis) always leads to some interesting discussions. Most of the time I try to “research” a topic beforehand, so that I am armed with the latest background information on whatever are my most pressing concerns at the time. When I launch into my questions (I always have a list written out), I have a better-than-even chance of holding a meaningful conversation with my rheumy. In turn, I get more out of the conversation instead of returning home with questions that even Google cannot answer. Understanding what he is really saying provides me with the sense that I am in control of my ankylosing spondylitis (AS), and not the other way around (AS controlling me?) Continue reading

AS it Goes – The Debate over NSAIDs

Pain relief (and NSAIDs)

Photo courtesy of David Castillo Dominici | FreeDigitalPhotos.net

The long-term usage of non-steroidal anti-inflammatories (NSAIDs) has always concerned me. Through the years I have taken different types of NSAIDs for varying periods. These NSAIDs even included (for a short time) VIOXX, which was pulled off the shelves in 2004 after studies confirmed that it increased the risk of heart attack and stroke. For many years I have taken diclofenac, which now researchers also believe carries a high cardiovascular risk, especially for people with a history of heart disease or other risk factors such as diabetes or high cholesterol. Continue reading

Call for patient organization input

Stickman with megaphone calling for patient organization inputCall for patient organization input on certolizumab pegol (Cimzia®) for psoriatic arthritis

Do you have psoriatic arthritis or care for someone who does? We need your valuable input.

The Common Drug Review (CDR) is currently welcoming patients and their caregivers to provide input to patient organizations on the manufacturer’s submission for certolizumab pegol (Cimzia®) for the treatment of psoriatic arthritis (PsA). Certolizumab pegol is indicated for use in combination with methotrexate for reducing signs and symptoms and inhibiting the progression of structural damage as assessed by X-ray, in adult patients with moderately to severely active psoriatic arthritis who have failed one or more disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (DMARDs). Continue reading

One Needle, Only One Time

Injection needle“One needle, only one time.” This statement may seem obvious in the context of any medical practice but as guest author on the Centers for Disease Control blog Dr. John O’Keefe notes in his article, Moving the Needle to Safe Dentistry, that rule, alarmingly, is not always followed.

As a result, the “One & Only Campaign” was created to raise awareness among patients and healthcare providers about safe injection practices. Led by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Safe Injection Practices Coalition (SIPC), the campaign aims to eradicate outbreaks resulting from unsafe injection practices.

Dr. O’Keefe is a dentist and board chairman for the Organization for Safety, Asepsis and Prevention (OSAP), which is the dental sector’s premier organization dedicated to infection prevention and control. OSAP, disappointed when it discovered that unsafe practices in a U.S. dental setting led to the first documented patient-to-patient case of hepatitis C last year, has joined forces with the CDC and SIPC. Click here to read the full article.

Research shows arthritis medication may slow Alzheimer’s

Brain xrayA recent research from the University of Southampton shows that the arthritis medication, etanarcept (Enbrel®), may slow Alzheimer’s disease. The research was presented at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference in Denmark last week.

In the small control study, a group of 41 patients exhibiting mild or moderate Alzheimer’s was given either the anti-inflammatory medication etanercept or a placebo every week over a period of six months.

Researchers monitored memory function in patients and found that the efficiency of day-to-day activities and behaviour and the symptoms of those who had taken etanercept did not get any worse. In comparison, the placebo group showed signs of decline in memory function.

In an interview with the Daily Mail, lead researcher, Professor Clive Holmes, said:

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AS it Goes – Too Good to be True?

Symbol of a target with and arrow and the word "promo"

Photo courtesy of Stuart Miles with FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Last week, my computer mouse inadvertently hovered over some advertising scrolling along the screen and I was instantly transported to another website.

This is not the first time this has happened, but before I became involved in an investment pitch or a cure for belly fat (both of which I probably could use), I warned myself to be remain vigilant and then repeatedly hit the “back” button until I was safely back on the terra firma of my home page. Continue reading

Innovation in Action

magnifying glass

Innovation in Action: Annual arthritis conference brings experts from around the globe to share research, improve patient care

The American College of Rheumatology (ACR) and the Association of Rheumatology Health Professionals (ARHP) meet once a year, bringing researchers from around the world together so they may share information and discuss the latest science, research, and treatments in the field of rheumatology. Innovative sessions, groundbreaking science, education that fills knowledge and practice gaps, and hands-on skills training make up some of the activities of the event.

The goals of the annual conference include:

  • Identifying developments in disease diagnosis and treatments.
  • Describing potential issues in delivery of care and sharing ideas for solutions.
  • Summarizing recent research findings.
  • Using new research data to improve the quality of patient care.
  • Encouraging research that leads to new treatment protocols.

Arthritis Consumer Experts was at the most recent event, held in October 2013, to represent people living with arthritis and to learn about the latest research findings so we could share them with you. Of particular interest to consumers were two presentations: One was about the current state of osteoarthritis treatment and ways to improve outcomes in the future. The other discussed recent advances in psoriatic arthritis research and how they could be used to effectively identify, diagnose, and treat the disease to improve patients’ quality of life and function. Continue reading