Thursday, August 23, 2012

Text Messages Help Schizophrenia Patients Adhere to Medication Regimen

A study reported online August 20 in Psychiatry Research assessed the impact of a short message service (SMS, also known as text messaging) on adherence to antipsychotic medication treatment, with favorable results. In a six-month study of 254 clinically stable patients with schizophrenia, a significantly greater improvement in adherence was observed among patients receiving the messages. Greater improvement in negative, cognitive, and global clinical symptoms was observed, and attitude towards medication also significantly improved across the study in the intervention group versus the controls.

"An SMS-based intervention seems feasible and acceptable for enhancing medication adherence," concluded the researchers, who noted that further studies are needed to confirm whether this kind of intervention could be a complementary strategy to optimize treatment adherence in schizophrenia.

Read what APA President-elect Jeffrey Lieberman, M.D., says about the future of treatment for schizophrenia patients in Psychiatric News here. And Psychiatric Services has published a study that found text messaging effective in reminding patients about upcoming appointments at a mental health center. Read that study here.

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