SYDNEY, Australia – The use of mobile apps increases people’s adherence to cardiovascular medication, according to a recent study by researchers at the University of Sydney and published in Heart. “Patients with coronary heart disease can become overwhelmed with the amount of pills they are taking as they are often prescribed up to four different types of medication, which need to be taken sometimes up to three times a day,” said Julie Redfern, senior author of the published article. The randomized clinical trial followed 160 patients over a 3-month period and compared the medication usage of patients in usual care to those using medication apps. Researchers also compared the use of basic apps to those with more advanced features, and found no additional benefits were gained from using apps with advanced features. Lead author Dr. Karla Santo from the University of Sydney said the results from the trial are very encouraging. “It’s exciting that a basic app—some of which can be accessed for free—could help improve people’s medication use and prevent further cardiovascular complications,” she said. Next step: explore whether apps can be used to sustain medication adherence over a longer period, and whether they can be applied to other conditions like cancer, lung disease and stroke.
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