Exploring stroke survivors’ self-efficacy in understanding and takingmedication and determining associated factors: A cross-sectional study in a neurology clinic in Malaysia

Jamuna Rani Appalasamy, Joyce Pauline Joseph, Siva Seeta Ramaiah, Kia Fatt Quek, Anuar Zaini Md Zain, Kyi Kyi Tha

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10 Citations (Scopus)


Background and aim: Evidence-based prescribing practices for stroke-preventive medication have benefited stroke survivors; however, medication-nonadherence rates remain high. Medication understanding and use self-efficacy (MUSE) has shown great importance in medication-taking behavior, but its relationship with medication nonadherence in strokepreventive regimens lacks exploration. The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of MUSE and its association with nonadherence causes and other potential factors among stroke survivors in Malaysia. Methods: This cross-sectional study was conducted among 282 stroke patients who provided informed consent and were in follow-up at theNeurology Outpatient Department of HospitalKuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The study employed a data-collection form that gathered information on sociodemographics, clinical treatment, outcome measures on MUSE, and medication-nonadherence reasons. Results: The prevalence of poor medication understanding and use self-efficacy among stroke patients was 46.5%, of which 29.1% had poor “learning about medication” self-efficacy, while 36.2% lacked self-efficacy in taking medication. Beliefs about medicine (74.02%) was the commonest reason for medication nonadherence, followed by medication-management issues (44.8%). In the multivariate model, independent variables significantly associated with MUSE were health literacy (AOR 0.2, 95% CI 0.069-0.581; P=0.003), medication-management issues (AOR 0.073, 95% CI 0.020-0.266; P<0.001), multiple-medication issues (AOR 0.28, 95% CI 0.085-0.925; P=0.037), beliefs about medicine (AOR 0.131, 95% CI 0.032-0.542; P=0.005), and forgetfulness/convenience issues (AOR 0.173, 95% CI 0.050-0.600; P=0.006). Conclusion: The relatively poor learning about medication and medication-taking self-efficacy in this study was highly associated with health literacy and modifiable behavioral issues related to nonadherence, such as medication management, beliefs about medicine, and forgetfulness/ convenience. Further research ought to explore these underlying reasons using vigorous techniques to enhance medication understanding and use self-efficacy among stroke survivors to determine cause-effect relationships.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1463-1475
Number of pages13
JournalPatient Preference and Adherence
Publication statusPublished - 28 Aug 2019


  • Crosssectional
  • Medication taking
  • Medication understanding
  • Poststroke
  • Self-efficacy

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