Medication Beliefs and Antihypertensive Adherence Among Older Adults: A Pilot Study

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Abstract

Older adults with hypertension are dependent on medication to control blood pressure and reduce risk for cardiovascular disease and renal impairment. Unfortunately, adherence to antihypertensive regimens remains low. This pilot study examines the relation among medication beliefs, demographic variables, and antihypertensive medication adherence in a sample of older adults (median age = 74 years). Medication beliefs were measured using the Beliefs About Medicines Questionnaire (BMQ), and medication adherence was measured by electronic monitoring. Among study participants (n = 33), concerns about medications were found to be related to poorer antihypertensive adherence. In particular, older adults with lower medication adherence were concerned about dependency and long-term effects from their medications. When controlling for other factors that may influence antihypertensive adherence, beliefs about medication necessity were related to adherence (odds ratio: 2.027, 95% confidence interval: 1.10–3.75).

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