A recent study published in the JAMA Dermatology journal revealed that a large percentage of patients following treatment for acne tend not to adhere to their prescription plan, especially if they are prescribed two or more different medications.
The study followed 143 people that had various levels of medication prescribed for acne by dermatologists, with more than 25 percent of them failing overall to acquire the prescribed medicine in full.
For those that had only one medication prescribed, most took it as they were told with only nine percent failing to do so. Real problems began in more serious cases where two or more different medications were prescribed with about 40 percent of those failing to abide by their dermatologist’s prescription. In the case of those with three or more different medications, 31 percent did not adhere to their dermatologist’s prescription plan.
“Non-adherence is a pervasive problem in all of medicine, particularly when treating chronic conditions such as acne. A previous study reported a 10 percent primary non-adherence rate for acne patients, so we were surprised that what we found was more than twice that” commented lead study author Dr. Steven Feldman, professor of dermatology at North Carolina’s Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center, reports The Mirror Daily.
The study also discovered that patients that were recommended pill based prescriptions were more likely to take their prescriptions than those recommended other types of treatment, such as lotions or creams. The causes for non-adherence in those that were prescribed multiple medications were blamed mostly on financial reasons, with some of the products not being covered by health insurance.
According to acne-resource.org, about 60 million American citizens suffer from acne, with rates being 85 percent prevalent in teenagers and 20 percent in adults. About a third of all acne sufferers in the U.S. have severe cases that threaten to leave behind longtime scars.