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      Therapeutic inertia in type 2 diabetes: prevalence, causes, consequences and methods to overcome inertia

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          Abstract

          Early glycaemic control leads to better outcomes, including a reduction in long-term macrovascular and microvascular complications. Despite good-quality evidence, glycaemic control has been shown to be inadequate globally. Therapeutic inertia has been shown present in all stages of treatment intensification, from the first oral antihyperglycaemic drug (OAD), all the way to the initiation of insulin. The causes and possible solutions to the problem of therapeutic inertia are complex but can be understood better when viewed from the perspective of the providers [healthcare professionals (HCPs)], patients and healthcare systems. In this review, we will discuss the possible aetiologies, consequences and solutions of therapeutic inertia, drawing upon evidence from published literature on the subject of type 2 diabetes.

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          Most cited references 30

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          Insulin adherence behaviours and barriers in the multinational Global Attitudes of Patients and Physicians in Insulin Therapy study

          Aims To examine patient and physician beliefs regarding insulin therapy and the degree to which patients adhere to their insulin regimens. Methods Internet survey of 1250 physicians (600 specialists, 650 primary care physicians) who treat patients with diabetes and telephone survey of 1530 insulin-treated patients (180 with Type 1 diabetes, 1350 with Type 2 diabetes) in China, France, Japan, Germany, Spain, Turkey, the UK or the USA. Results One third (33.2%) of patients reported insulin omission/non-adherence at least 1 day in the last month, with an average of 3.3 days. Three quarters (72.5%) of physicians report that their typical patient does not take their insulin as prescribed, with a mean of 4.3 days per month of basal insulin omission/non-adherence and 5.7 days per month of prandial insulin omission/non-adherence. Patients and providers indicated the same five most common reasons for insulin omission/non-adherence: too busy; travelling; skipped meals; stress/emotional problems; public embarrassment. Physicians reported low patient success at initiating insulin in a timely fashion and adjusting insulin doses. Most physicians report that many insulin-treated patients do not have adequate glucose control (87.6%) and that they would treat more aggressively if not for concern about hypoglycaemia (75.5%). Although a majority of patients (and physicians) regard insulin treatment as restrictive, more patients see insulin treatment as having positive than negative impacts on their lives. Conclusions Glucose control is inadequate among insulin-treated patients, in part attributable to insulin omission/non-adherence and lack of dose adjustment. There is a need for insulin regimens that are less restrictive and burdensome with lower risk of hypoglycaemia.
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            Poor medication adherence in type 2 diabetes: recognizing the scope of the problem and its key contributors

            At least 45% of patients with type 2 diabetes (T2D) fail to achieve adequate glycemic control (HbA1c <7%). One of the major contributing factors is poor medication adherence. Poor medication adherence in T2D is well documented to be very common and is associated with inadequate glycemic control; increased morbidity and mortality; and increased costs of outpatient care, emergency room visits, hospitalization, and managing complications of diabetes. Poor medication adherence is linked to key nonpatient factors (eg, lack of integrated care in many health care systems and clinical inertia among health care professionals), patient demographic factors (eg, young age, low education level, and low income level), critical patient beliefs about their medications (eg, perceived treatment inefficacy), and perceived patient burden regarding obtaining and taking their medications (eg, treatment complexity, out-of-pocket costs, and hypoglycemia). Specific barriers to medication adherence in T2D, especially those that are potentially modifiable, need to be more clearly identified; strategies that target poor adherence should focus on reducing medication burden and addressing negative medication beliefs of patients. Solutions to these problems would require behavioral innovations as well as new methods and modes of drug delivery.
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              Clinical inertia in response to inadequate glycemic control: do specialists differ from primary care physicians?

              Diabetic patients with inadequate glycemic control ought to have their management intensified. Failure to do so can be termed "clinical inertia." Because data suggest that specialist care results in better control than primary care, we evaluated whether specialists demonstrated less clinical inertia than primary care physicians. Using administrative data, we studied all non-insulin-requiring diabetic patients in eastern Ontario aged 65 or older who had A1c results >8% between September 1999 and August 2000. Drug intensification was measured by comparing glucose-lowering drug regimens in 4-month blocks before and after the elevated A1c test and was defined as 1) the addition of a new oral drug, 2) a dose increase of an existing oral drug, or 3) the initiation of insulin. Propensity score-based matching was used to control for confounding between groups. There were 591 patients with specialist care and 1,911 with exclusively primary care. In the matched cohorts, 45.1% of patients with specialist care versus 37.4% with primary care had drug intensification (P = 0.009). Most of this difference was attributed to specialists' more frequent initiation of insulin in response to elevated A1c. Fewer than one-half of patients with high A1c levels had intensification of their medications, regardless of specialty of their physician. Specialists were more aggressive with insulin initiation than primary care physicians, which may contribute to the lower A1c levels seen with specialist care. Interventions assisting patients and physicians to recognize and overcome clinical inertia should improve diabetes care in the population.
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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                Journal
                Ther Adv Endocrinol Metab
                Ther Adv Endocrinol Metab
                TAE
                sptae
                Therapeutic Advances in Endocrinology and Metabolism
                SAGE Publications (Sage UK: London, England )
                2042-0188
                2042-0196
                03 May 2019
                2019
                : 10
                Affiliations
                School of Medicine and Dentistry, Barts and the London School of Medicine and Dentistry, London, UK
                Diabetes Research Centre, University of Leicester, Leicester, UK
                Diabetes Research Centre, University of Leicester, Leicester General Hospital, Gwendolen Road, Leicester LE5 4PW, UK
                Author notes
                Article
                10.1177_2042018819844694
                10.1177/2042018819844694
                6502982
                f6166550-b827-45b5-9c25-b34caa61d674
                © The Author(s), 2019

                This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 License ( http://www.creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/) which permits non-commercial use, reproduction and distribution of the work without further permission provided the original work is attributed as specified on the SAGE and Open Access pages ( https://us.sagepub.com/en-us/nam/open-access-at-sage).

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                Review
                Custom metadata
                January-December 2019

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