Background The use of orally administered anticancer treatment has increased dramatically in the last few years. Patient non-adherence to oral antineoplastic treatment is a barrier to effective treatment.
Purpose To estimate adherence and to identify factors that can affect compliance with oral antineoplastic drugs in cancer patients.
Materials and Methods Adult oncology-haematology patients using oral antineoplastic treatments dispensed at the outpatients Hospital Pharmacy from July to September 2012 (three months) were included.
Data was collected to characterise the sociodemographic variables (gender, age), medical diagnosis and oral antineoplastic treatment.
Two questionnaires were used for data collection and filled in during pharmacist-patient interviews.
The Morisky and Green Test evaluates attitudes regarding treatment adherence.
The DUKE-UNC functional social support scale measures the perceived social support. A score ≥32 indicates normal support, and <32 low perceived social support.
The association between qualitative variables studied was evaluated with the chi-square test. Quantitative variables, shown as median and standard deviation, were compared with the student test. The p < 0.05 values were considered statistically significant.
Results 30 patients were included during the study period, 56.66% female. Median age: 65 years (range 24–78).
Antineoplastic oral drugs used: capecitabine (24 patients), imatinib (4), abiraterone and pazopanib (1 case each)
Type of cancer: colorectal (20 patients), chronic myeloid leukaemia (3), breast (2), gastric, GIST, vagina and thyroid (1 case each)
80% adherence was found using the Morisky and Green Test.
Three patients scored below 32 on the DUKE-UNC questionnaire.
Patients with positive values (non-adherence) for Morisky and Green test were statistically significantly associated with younger age (p < 0.0366) and low perceived social support (DUKE-UNC < 32) (p < 0.003)
Conclusions Non-adherence to antineoplastic treatment is 20% in our population. Factors related to poor compliance were younger age and DUKE-UNC score below 32.
No conflict of interest.
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