Just Half of Kidney Stone Patients Adhere to Medication

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Compliant patients have fewer ER visits, hospitalizations, stone disease surgeries.
Compliant patients have fewer ER visits, hospitalizations, stone disease surgeries.

(HealthDay News) -- Just over half of kidney stone patients are adherent to preventive pharmacological therapy, and adherent patients have lower levels of health care utilization, according to a study published in the March issue of The Journal of Urology.

Casey A. Dauw, MD, from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, and colleagues assessed medication adherence among adult patients with a diagnosis of kidney stones. By accessing medical and pharmacy claims data, adherence to therapy within the first 6 months of initiating treatment was measured the proportion of days covered formula. Adherence was defined as a proportion of days covered value of 80% or greater.

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The researchers found that just over half (51.1%) of 8,950 eligible patients were adherent to preventive pharmacological therapy. Adherent patients had lower odds of emergency department visits (odds ratio [OR], 0.73), hospitalization (OR, 0.59), and surgery for stone disease (OR, 0.77), compared to nonadherent patients.

"To improve adherence further research is needed to understand patient and provider level factors that contribute to lower rates of adherence," the authors write.

One author disclosed financial ties to the medical device industry.


  1. Dauw CA, Yi Y, Bierlein MJ, et al. Medication Nonadherence and Effectiveness of Preventive Pharmacological Therapy for Kidney Stones. J of Urol. doi:10.1016/j.juro.2015.10.082.

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