This study explored medication adherence and medication beliefs of patients with epilepsy and evaluated the relationship between these two factors.
This descriptive, cross-sectional, correlational study was conducted with 174 patients with epilepsy who were referred to the neurology outpatient clinic of a university hospital in Erzurum, Turkey, between February 10, 2020 and December 30, 2020. The data were collected using the Descriptive Information Form, The eight-item Morisky Medication Adherence Scale (MMAS-8), and the Beliefs about Medicines Questionnaire (BMQ-T).
The mean age of the patients was 33.06 ± 11.94 years, and the mean duration of time since diagnosis was 12.91 ± 10.73 years. In terms of demographic information, 60.3% of the patients were single, 58% had low income or were unemployed, 53.4% had five or more seizures within the last year, 40.8% had focal onset seizures, 69% had no other chronic disease, and 76.4% used more than one medicine. The patients’ mean MMAS-8 score was 3.25 ± 2.13. The mean scores for the specific concern subscale was 3.65 ± 0.85, 1.81 ± 0.75 for the specific necessity subscale, 4.19 ± 0.76 for the general overuse subscale, and 3.14 ± 1.41 for the general harm subscale. The regression analysis revealed that general overuse and general harm negatively affected the MMAS-8 total score.
Patients with epilepsy reported low medication adherence and were found to have concerns about the harms and side effects of the medicines they were using; they had negative perceptions of the purpose of medicines; they had high beliefs about the harms of medicines; and they had low beliefs about their personal treatment needs. The patients were generally found to have negative beliefs about medicines, which negatively affected their medication adherence.

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