Follow-up more than six weeks after heart attack linked to reduced medication adherence

Researchers looked at the effect of follow-up appointments on medicine adherence following acute myocardial infarction.

Close up of an ECG of a patient who suffered from acute myocardial infarction (AMI) in hospital

Secondary preventative therapy after acute myocardial infarction (AMI) is associated with decreased risk of readmission and mortality, but medication adherence is poor in the year following AMI. 

In a study published in JAMA Cardiology (online, 23 March 2016)[1]
, researchers looked at the effect of follow-up appointments on medication adherence in 20,976 patients with AMI (mean age: 75.8 years). 

At three months post-AMI, one in three patients was no longer adherent to medications such as beta-blockers, statins, antiplatelets and angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors. The researchers found that patients who had their first follow-up appointment within six weeks following discharge had significantly better adherence at both 90 days and one year compared with those who were followed up later. 

The team say the findings suggest that improving care transitions following discharge could increase medication adherence in patients with AMI.


[1] Faridi KF, Peterson ED, McCoy LA et al. Timing of First Postdischarge Follow-up and Medication Adherence After Acute Myocardial Infarction. JAMA Cardiology 2016.  doi: 10.1001/jamacardio.2016.0001

Last updated
Clinical Pharmacist, CP, April 2016, Vol 8, No 4;8(4):DOI:10.1211/PJ.2016.20200932

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