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Psychol Health Med. 2015;20(7):781-9. doi: 10.1080/13548506.2015.1009917. Epub 2015 Mar 16.

Improving medication adherence in rheumatoid arthritis (RA): a pilot study.

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a Academic Rheumatology, Clinical Trials Group, Faculty of Life Sciences & Medicine , King's College London , Weston Education Centre 10, Cutcombe Road, London SE5 9RJ , UK.


The aim of this exploratory pilot study was to adapt a psychological intervention to improve adherence to medication for patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA). The approach draws on cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) techniques, including motivational interviewing . The current study aimed to (i) adapt the intervention for patients with RA, (ii) assess its effectiveness in improving adherence to medication and (iii) evaluate patients' experience of the intervention. Participants were randomly allocated to either the 'intervention group' (Nā€‰ = ā€‰10), receiving up to six weekly sessions of 'Compliance Therapy', or to the 'wait-list control' group (Nā€‰ = ā€‰8), who received standard care. Data was collected pre intervention (baseline), post intervention and at six weeks post intervention (follow-up). Eighteen female participants with a mean age of 48.78 years (SD 15.12) took part in the study. Comparisons across the two time points for each group found that only those in the 'intervention' group demonstrated significant improvement in mean scores on adherence measures. Between-group comparisons were not significant. The pilot study suggests that an intervention based on CBT may improve adherence in patients with RA, but further research is required.


adherence; cognitive behavioural therapy; rheumatoid arthritis

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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