Journal Article

Factors Affecting Adherence to Antiretroviral Therapy

Margaret A. Chesney

in Clinical Infectious Diseases

Published on behalf of Infectious Diseases Society of America

Volume 30, issue Supplement_2, pages S171-S176
Published in print June 2000 | ISSN: 1058-4838
Published online June 2000 | e-ISSN: 1537-6591 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/313849
Factors Affecting Adherence to Antiretroviral Therapy

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In both clinical trials and clinical practice, nonadherence to medications is widespread among patients with chronic diseases. The shift to combination therapies for treating human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-infected individuals has increased adherence challenges for both patients and health-care providers. Estimates of average rates of nonadherence to antiretroviral therapy range from 50% to 70%. Adherence rates of <80% are associated with detectable viremia in a majority of patients. The principal factors associated with nonadherence appear to be patient-related, including substance and alcohol abuse. However, other factors may also contribute, such as inconvenient dosing frequency, dietary restrictions, pill burden, and side effects; patient-health-care provider relationships; and the system of care. We discuss the major reasons reported by HIV-infected individuals for not taking their medications. Improving adherence probably requires clarifying the treatment regimen and tailoring it to patient lifestyles.

Journal Article.  4119 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Infectious Diseases ; Immunology ; Public Health and Epidemiology ; Microbiology

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