Patterns of Prescription of Psychotropic Medications and Their Adherence among Patients with Schizophrenia in Two Psychiatric Hospitals in Accra, Ghana: A Cross-Sectional Survey.

Patterns of Prescription of Psychotropic Medications and Their Adherence among Patients with Schizophrenia in Two Psychiatric Hospitals in Accra, Ghana: A Cross-Sectional Survey.

Psychiatry J. 2018;2018:9850594

Authors: Ashong S, Kretchy IA, Afrane B, de-Graft Aikins A

Abstract
Background: Patients with schizophrenia are managed with antipsychotics and other psychotropic medications.
Objectives: This study aimed to assess the commonly prescribed psychotropic medications for patients with schizophrenia, explore the types of therapeutic monitoring that were performed, and find out whether the side effects experienced by the patients played any role in their adherence behaviour.
Methods: This hospital-based cross-sectional study enrolled 259 patients with schizophrenia from Accra Psychiatric Hospital and Pantang Psychiatric Hospital. Data were collected on mental status, side effects, types of therapeutic monitoring performed, and adherence behaviour.
Results: Olanzapine was the commonly prescribed psychotropic medication. Most of respondents (73.4%) experienced mild levels of side effects. The negative effects were predominantly genitourinary (26%) and gastrointestinal (17.2%). Blood pressure and heart rate measures were the main types of monitoring performed but no measurement of drug levels was reported. About 98.1% of the participants poorly adhered to their medications and the major reasons for poor adherence were economic challenges, forgetfulness, and the feeling of wellness.
Conclusion: Adherence to medication is a major health problem among patients with schizophrenia and there is a need to improve adherence and treatment outcomes.

PMID: 29536020 [PubMed]