Summary: Patients with inadequate health literacy, those with medical comorbidities, or those with a previous history of adverse drug events have a higher likelihood of non-adherence to osteoporosis treatment after sustaining a distal radius fracture. Introduction: Patients with a distal radial fracture (DRF) have a higher risk of subsequent fractures, which provides an important opportunity to begin treatment for osteoporosis. This study assessed the effect that health literacy of patients suffering from a DRF has on the subsequent adherence to osteoporosis treatment. Methods: A total of 116 patients (female, over 50 years of age) presenting a DRF caused by low-energy trauma were enrolled. Their health literacy was measured using the Newest Vital Sign (NVS). Alendronate (70 mg, orally, once weekly) was prescribed to all patients for 1 year, and adherence was defined as taking at least 80% of the tablets for 12 months and returning for the visit on month 12. Multivariable analyses were conducted to determine whether the patients’ clinical, demographic, and health literacy factors influenced their adherence to osteoporosis treatment. Results: About half (52%) of the participants who sustained a DRF exhibited an inadequate health literacy, and the rate of non-adherence to osteoporosis treatment was 38%. The rate of non-adherence for patients with inadequate literacy was significantly higher than for those with appropriate literacy (47 vs. 29%, p = 0.04). The results of the regression analysis indicate that limited health literacy, the presence of comorbidities, and prior history of adverse drug events are associated with a higher likelihood of non-adherence to osteoporosis treatment after sustaining a DRF. Conclusions: Patients with inadequate health literacy, adverse drug events, or medical comorbidities had higher rates of non-adherence with alendronate treatment after sustaining a DRF. Further research is needed to show whether improvements in patient comprehension via informational intervention in patients with a DRF will improve adherence to osteoporosis treatment.
Bibliographical notePublisher Copyright:
© 2017, International Osteoporosis Foundation and National Osteoporosis Foundation.
- Distal radius fracture
- Health literacy
- Osteoporosis treatment