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Pediatr Transplant. 2011 Feb;15(1):9-16. doi: 10.1111/j.1399-3046.2010.01369.x. Epub 2010 Sep 30.

Preparing for transition? The allocation of oral medication regimen tasks in adolescents with renal transplants.

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  • 1Center for the Promotion of Treatment Adherence and Self-Management, Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, OH 45229-3039, USA.


A mixed-methods design was utilized to examine strategies that families use to manage the post-transplant oral medication regimen of adolescents with renal transplants. Seventeen adolescents and their caregivers were administered structured interviews assessing the tasks that families identified as comprising the oral medication regimen, how tasks were allocated across family members and how the dyad decided on the allocation of tasks. Adherence was assessed via electronic pill bottles and calculated by dividing the number of doses taken by those prescribed. Patients and their caregivers identified the following tasks as part of the oral medication regimen: filling the pillbox (71%), calling for refills (65%) and verifying that the pillbox is filled correctly (47%). Adult caregivers were primarily responsible for managing the medication regimen for the majority of adolescents (70%). Secondary analyses revealed that the number of oral medication regimen tasks identified by the dyad was significantly associated with patient adherence. Our findings highlight the need to bolster efforts to develop methods to quantitatively assess and promote self-management skills among adolescents with renal transplants.

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