Introduction: Adequate medication knowledge among stroke patients has been shown to be associated with a reduction in vascular risk factors and recurrent stroke. Yet, limited research has investigated the clinical and sociodemographic factors associated with adequate medication knowledge among stroke survivors.
Methods: The Discharge Educational Strategies for Reduction of Vascular Events (DESERVE) trial was an RCT of a skills-based educational intervention in a multi-ethnic cohort of mild stroke/TIA patients. As part of the trial, patients randomized to the intervention arm were called 72 hours post-discharge and asked about their knowledge of the discharge medications reported in their medical record. They received 1 point each for correctly reporting the name, purpose and dosage of the medication; medication knowledge scores ranged from 0 to 3 for each medication. For each patient, medication knowledge scores were averaged across all of their medications, and the average score was categorized as “adequate” (score ≥ 2) and “inadequate” (score < 2). Multivariable logistic regression analysis was used to evaluate the independent associations between having adequate medication knowledge and select sociodemographic and clinical factors measured pre-discharge.
Results: A total of 235 patients were included in the analysis. On average, patients were able to accurately recall 50% of their medication names, 57% of their medication purposes, and 39% of their medication dosages. Thirty-seven percent had adequate medication knowledge. In the adjusted model, the odds of having adequate medication knowledge was higher for patients taking less than 5 medications vs. those taking 11 medications or more (odds ratio [OR]: 9.99; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 4.01-24.88), patients younger than 60 years vs. those 60 years or older (OR: 2.05; 95% CI: 1.10-3.80), and patients who had no stroke history vs. those who previously had a stroke (OR: 2.66; 95% CI: 1.25-5.64).
Conclusion: Understanding the factors associated with medication knowledge among stroke survivors can help tailor discharge education plans to maximize medication adherence and improve stroke outcomes.