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Interventions to improve secondary prevention after stroke are needed: adherence to prescribed preventative drugs after stroke declines rapidly during the first 2 years after hospital discharge
  1. Steven R Erickson1,
  2. Kim A Eagle2
  1. 1College of Pharmacy, University of Michigan, Michigan, USA
  2. 2School of Medicine, University of Michigan, Michigan, USA
  1. Correspondence to Steven R Erickson
    428 Church Street, Ann Arbor, MI 48109, USA; serick{at}

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The message is clear. Many patients do not take their medication as directed, nor do they continue to take them, a message derived from decades of research.1 In developed countries, adherence averages only 50% and is considered to be a major problem worldwide.2 Inadequate adherence, or lack of persistence, may lead to catastrophic events such as stroke. Having experienced one of these events is not a guarantee that patients will continue taking medication. Studies such as the one by Glader and colleagues demonstrate that even after a stroke, about half of patients who were prescribed appropriate, evidence-based medications discontinue therapy.

Study design

The study by Glader and colleagues followed a cohort of stroke patients for a period of 2 years after their index event. Data were obtained from the Swedish Stroke Registry and national-pharmacy-claims data for antihypertensive drugs, statins, antiplatelet agents and …

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  • Competing interests None.