News / Health

Heart Patients More Likely to Take Medication When in Single Pill

Heart Patients More Likely to Take Medication When in Single Pilli
X
September 07, 2013 3:14 PM
Many patients who have heart disease or who have suffered a stroke don’t take their medications as regularly as prescribed. One study shows that a number of stroke patients stop taking their pills within three months after having a stroke. A new study in Britain finds that if patients with heart disease can take a single pill instead of several pills, they are more likely to stay on their medication.
Heart Patients More Likely to Take Medication When in Single Pill
Carol Pearson
Many patients who have heart disease or who have suffered a stroke don’t take their medications as regularly as prescribed. One study shows that a number of stroke patients stop taking their pills within three months after having a stroke. A new study in Britain finds that if patients with heart disease can take a single pill instead of several pills, they are more likely to stay on their medication. 

Patients at risk for heart attack or stroke may be taking a lot of pills. Some could reduce blood pressure. Other pills could control cholesterol. Still others might be prescribed to prevent a heart attack.

Henryk Pycz, who has both high blood pressure and diabetes, participated in a study to see if he could do better in managing his health by reducing the number of pills he had to take.

"When I was taking the medication consisting of a variety of tablets, I'd have either five, six or seven tablets to take," he said.

Dr. Simon Thom, from the National Heart and Lung Institute at the Imperial College in London, knew it was hard for patients to manage all those medications. 

"We know there's a big shortfall in the coverage and continued usage of preventative medication, particularly in lower middle income countries," he said.

Dr. Thom led a study that involved more than 2,000 patients. Almost 90 percent of them had suffered a stroke or had heart disease. The other 10 percent had a high risk of having one. Half of the participants received a combination daily medication known as a polypill that contained statins, blood pressure medication and another drug like aspirin to prevent blood clots. The other participants were told to continue taking their regular medications. Dr. Thom says the results clearly favored the polypill.

“More patients at the end of the trial were taking indicated medications in the form of the fixed dose combination polypill than were in the usual care group,” he said.

The patients who took the polypill had improvements in control of both blood pressure and cholesterol. Pycz said he also learned something.

"It helped me to understand that controlling your medication is important. The polypill meant that I was never out of sync I always had the correct amount of tablets to take,” he said.

Dr. Thom says the study has huge implications, especially for those who skip their medications.

“The polypill has a big public health opportunity to bridge the gap of under usage of indicated and effective therapeutic medication,” he said.

Dr. Thom says that's because those who made the biggest gains in taking in taking their medications as prescribed were the ones who were most likely to skip them at the beginning of the trial.

The study appears in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

You May Like

Tunnel Bombs Highlight Savagery of Aleppo Fight

Rebels have used tunneling tactic near government buildings, command posts or supply routes to set off explosives; they detonated their largest bomb this week under Syria's intelligence headquarters More

Sierra Leone Launches New Initiative to Stop Ebola Spread

Government hopes Infection and Prevention Control Units, IPC, will help protect patients and healthcare workers More

UN Official: Fight Against Terrorism Must Not Violate Human Rights

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights says efforts by states to combat terrorism are resulting in large scale rights violations against the very citizens they claim to defend More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Yoshi from: Sapporo
September 10, 2013 10:45 PM
Yes, polypills, combination of several pills having different effects respectively, would be convenient for patients to take them with good adherence. Costs for drugs would also be reduced. But I am afraid timely change of the dosage of each pills would be bothersome for doctors. Some pharmaceutical companies would succeed in enclose large amounts of shares of drug marcket. Thank you.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Video Claims to Show Shia Forces in Iraq Executing Sunni Boyi
X
Jeff Seldin
March 05, 2015 2:36 AM
A graphic mobile phone video is spreading on the Internet, claiming to show Iraqi forces or Shia militia executing a handcuffed Sunni boy. Experts have yet to verify the video, but already Islamic State followers are publicizing it across social media, playing on deep-rooted sectarian fears. VOA’s Jeff Seldin reports.
Video

Video Video Claims to Show Shia Forces in Iraq Executing Sunni Boy

A graphic mobile phone video is spreading on the Internet, claiming to show Iraqi forces or Shia militia executing a handcuffed Sunni boy. Experts have yet to verify the video, but already Islamic State followers are publicizing it across social media, playing on deep-rooted sectarian fears. VOA’s Jeff Seldin reports.
Video

Video Ukrainian Authorities Struggle to Secure a Divided Mariupol

Since last month's cease-fire went into effect, shelling around the port city of Mariupol has decreased, but it is thought pro-Russian separatists remain poised to attack. For the city’s authorities, a major challenge is gaining the trust of residents, while at the same time rooting out informants who are passing sensitive information to the rebels. Patrick Wells reports for VOA.
Video

Video Volunteer Gauge-Watchers Help Fine-Tune Weather Science

An observation system called CoCoRaHS is working to improve weather science, thanks to thousands of volunteers across the country who measure precipitation in their own backyards, then share their data through the Internet. VOA's Shelley Schlender reports.
Video

Video NASA Spacecraft Approaches a Dwarf Planet

NASA’s Dawn spacecraft will make history on Friday, March 6, when it becomes the first man-made object to orbit a dwarf planet named Ceres. It is located in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter, almost 500 million kilometers from Earth. Among other objectives, Dawn will try to examine two mysterious bright white spots detected on the planet’s surface. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Young Muslims Radicalized Online

Young Muslims are being radicalized ‘in their bedrooms’ through direct contact with Islamic State or ISIL fighters via the Internet, according to terror experts. There are growing concerns that authorities and Internet providers are not doing enough to counter online extremism - which analysts say is spread by a prolific network of online supporters around the world. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video African Americans Recall 1960's Fight For Voting Rights

U.S. President Barack Obama and thousands of people will gather in the small southern U.S. city of Selma, Alabama, Saturday, March 7th to commemorate the 50th anniversary of a historic voting rights march that became known as “Bloody Sunday." VOA’s Chris Simkins traveled to Alabama and introduces us to some of the foot soldiers of the voting rights struggles of the 1960’s.
Video

Video Positive Messaging Transforms Ethiopia's Image

Ethiopia was once known for famine and droughts. Now, headlines more often point to its fast-growing economy and its emergence as a regional peacemaker. How has Addis Ababa changed the narrative? VOA's Marthe van der Wolf reports.
Video

Video Cyber War Rages Between Iran, US

A newly published report indicates Iran and the United States have increased their cyber attacks on each other, even as their top diplomats are working toward an agreement to guarantee Iran does not develop a nuclear weapon and to free Iran from international sanctions. The development is part of a growing global trend. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video Answers Elude Families of MH370 Passengers

For the families on board Malaysia Airlines flight MH370, an airline official’s statement nearly one year ago that the plane had lost contact with air traffic control at 2:40 AM is the only thing that remains confirmed. William Ide reports.

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More