Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

BACKGROUND: Clinical trials suggest that oral anticoagulation therapy (OAT) self-monitoring is safe and effective, however little is known about the patient experience of this process. There is a lack of understanding about how best to train and support patients embarking on OAT self-monitoring. AIM: To collect in-depth information about patients' experiences of OAT self-monitoring outside of clinical trial conditions and to produce a set of recommendations on how best to support such patients. DESIGN AND SETTING: Semi-structured qualitative interviews with patients who self-monitor and live in England. METHOD: In total, 26 of the 267 (9.7%) who participated in the Cohort study of Anticoagulation Self-Monitoring (CASM) and were still self-monitoring after 12 months' follow-up were interviewed. Topics discussed included experiences of OAT self-monitoring, healthcare support, training, and decision making. Framework analysis was used. RESULTS: Following initial problems using the monitoring device, interviewees described a mostly positive experience. Although less effort was expended attending monitoring appointments with health professionals, effort was required to conduct self-monitoring tests and to interpret and act on the results. Desire to self-manage was variable, especially when dosing advice systems worked promptly and reliably. Interviewees overcame patchy healthcare system knowledge and support of self-monitoring by educating themselves. Family and friends provided support with learning to use the monitor and managing OAT dosage adjustments. CONCLUSION: Better, more-consistent training and health-service support would have alleviated a number of problems encountered by these patients who were self-monitoring. This training and support will become even more important if self-monitoring becomes more accessible to the general population of people on OAT.

Original publication

DOI

10.3399/bjgp15X685645

Type

Journal article

Journal

Br J Gen Pract

Publication Date

07/2015

Volume

65

Pages

e438 - e446

Keywords

anticoagulants, primary care, qualitative research, self-management, self-monitoring, Administration, Oral, Adult, Aftercare, Aged, Anticoagulants, Drug Monitoring, England, Female, Follow-Up Studies, Humans, Incidence, International Normalized Ratio, Male, Middle Aged, Patient Education as Topic, Primary Health Care, Qualitative Research, Self Care, Stroke, Surveys and Questionnaires, Time Factors