The importance of taking your medicine exactly as prescribed.
There are many obstacles to medical treatment that prevent improvement of a patient’s symptoms, but the most common and obvious roadblock is the lack of patient compliance.
It seems simplistic, but the fact that you are given a prescription and you fill it at your pharmacy does not mean you will get better unless you actually take your medication as the prescription instructs you to take it.
This is one reason that Dr. Maupin likes to treat men and women with testosterone pellets. If they come to the office, they get their medication and she does not have to depend on them to remember to take their doses. By using insertion of bio identical pellets, the patient has the full three- or four-month prescription already within their body and does not have to remember or do anything to receive the benefit of the medicine.
A recent study revealed that fewer than 1 in 5 Hypogonadic men are adherent to prescribed topical testosterone treatments. This study said that the severity of the problem with men taking their testosterone gel. A total of 3184 men were studied and only 17% of them remembered to take their T gel as prescribed. What a waste! Worse yet, 81% of them stopped filling their prescriptions at one year.
It is always difficult to remember what needs to become a new habit. It will help if you learn to link taking your medicine to some other habituated event, such as brushing your teeth. This is a skill you should work on learning when you get to the stage in your life that you need to take some medicines regularly.
Dr. Maupin also questions whether or not the study was done on the best form of testosterone treatment. It was focused on men remembering to apply a testosterone gel. The method that Dr. Maupin’s office uses does not require memory or repetitions of physical behaviors! Some of this she attributes to the belief that the gel type does not make men feel better. If it did, they would be more likely to remember to take it as prescribed!
She contends that part of this is that there is research which shows that testosterone gels are known to convert into too much estrogen for the men which counteracts the goals of giving them testosterone in the first place.
Facing this reality of people not remembering to take medicines that are prescribed for them in the way they are supposed to, it behooves doctors to try to find ways of delivering medicines that do not require patient compliance behaviors. Replacing testosterone for men or women can be done in such a way that patient participation and behavior is not required. Conversations with the doctor or nurse can reinforce the awareness of the patient that the medicine is actually doing what it is supposed to do. Helping patients to get better and to have a longer health-span is the goal of medicine as it is practiced at BioBalance health.
This Health cast was written and presented by Dr. Kathy Maupin, M.D., Bio-identical Hormone Replacement Expert and Author, with Brett Newcomb, MA., LPC., Family Counselor, Presenter and Author. www.BioBalanceHealth.com.