Background: Osteoporosis is common in older adults leading to fragility fractures at enormous individual and economic cost. Improving long-term adherence with bisphosphonate treatments reduces fracture risk, but adherence rates for first line oral bisphosphonate alendronate remains low. While alternative treatment regimens, including annual intravenous infusions are available, patient acceptability remains unclear. Therefore, understanding patients' acceptability and engagement in different bisphosphonate regimens is important to ensure optimal treatment benefits.
Methods: Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 78 patients with a mean age of 69.9 years, who had taken or received bisphosphonates for osteoporosis within the last 24 months. Data analysis included iterative categorization and used the Theoretical Framework of Acceptability (TFA) to compare the acceptability of
Results: Treatment acceptability and engagement were influenced by the extent to which patients understood the prescribed treatment, and evidence of the treatment working. Acceptability and engagement were compromised when treatment was perceived as burdensome, personal costs were incurred, and patients’ values were
incompatible with the regimen. The balancing of these factors contributed to patients’ ability to cope with the treatment and their emotional responses. Intravenous treatment was generally perceived as easier to understand, more effective, less burdensome with fewer opportunity costs, and a preferable regimen compared with oral bisphosphonates.
Conclusions: Annual intravenous zoledronate bisphosphonate treatment was generally more acceptable to patients, perceived as more straightforward to engage in, although a small portion of patients on oral bisphosphonates were satisfied with treatment. Further research is needed to identify how acceptability and engagement can be optimised.
Narayanasamy, M., Bishop, S., Sahota, O., Paskins, Z., Gittoes, N., & Langley, T. (2022). Acceptability and engagement amongst patients on oral and intravenous bisphosphonates for the treatment of osteoporosis in older adults. Age and Ageing, 51(11), Article afac255. https://doi.org/10.1093/ageing/afac255