More women discontinue antihypertensive treatment than men
More women than men cease from taking their antihypertensive medication, as shown by the results of a recent study conducted in a real-life setting.
The investigators sought to compare persistence with antihypertensive drug therapy between men and women in a large cohort of patients. They identified a total of 60,526 residents of the Italian Lombardy Region, who were aged 40–80 years and newly treated with antihypertensive drugs during 2010, and followed them for 1 year after the first prescription.
Treatment discontinuation was defined as lack of prescription renewal for at least 90 days. The risk ratio of treatment discontinuation in relation to sex was estimated by fitting log-binomial regression models. Analyses were stratified according to age, comorbidity status and the initial antihypertensive treatment strategy.
Of the participants, 37 percent discontinued antihypertensive treatment during follow-up. The risk of treatment discontinuation was 10-percent (95 percent confidence interval, 8–12) lower in men than in women. In addition, men showed better adherence to antihypertensive treatment than women, and this was true in both younger (40–64 years) and older patients (65–80 years), in patients starting treatment with any major antihypertensive drug, and in patients with a low comorbidity status.
However, no evidence was found on whether men and women had a different risk of treatment discontinuation when their comorbidity status was worse or initial antihypertensive treatment was based on drug combinations.