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Enhancing Patient Understanding of Medication Risks and Benefits

Young woman with high fever coughing and taking a medicine in the bed.

Arthritis Care & Research

Susan J. Blalock, Elizabeth B. Solow, Valerie F. Reyna, Molly Keebler, Delesha Carpenter, Caprice Hunt, Genevieve Hickey, Kimberlee O’Neill, Jeffrey R. Curtis and Sandra Bond Chapman

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Written medication information is typically given to patients using either the DrugFactsBox or other consumer medication information. In an evaluation of the effectiveness of these techniques in informing 286 rheumatoid arthritis patients of the details of their medication, both were equally effective. When participants were provided with the tactical brain strategies of the SMART™ program over six months, their informed decision making was improved. This demonstrates the potential for a gist reasoning program to enhance informed decision making among patients with limited information regarding their treatment options.

Figure 1 demonstrates the conceptual framework behind this study which concludes that providing gist reasoning training can make individuals better consumers of information. Which, in the context of medication information, leads to more informed decision making regarding treatments.

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Sandra Bond Chapman, PhD

Chief Director Dee Wyly Distinguished Professor, School of Behavioral and Brain Sciences Co-Leader, The BrainHealth Project