New educational approach for patients on warfarin improves knowledge and therapy control
Background: Patient education is essential for a safe and efficient oral anticoagulant treatment. We examined if a newly launched booklet with information on anticoagulant treatment with warfarin improved patient knowledge and the time spent in the therapeutic-range (TTR).
Methods: Standardized questionnaire was administered to 235 consecutive patients on warfarin to assess their baseline knowledge and readministered it 2 months after they received the booklet. A control group of 51 patients was interviewed only after the booklet had been distributed.
Results: Patient’s knowledge at the baseline was unsatisfying (mean questionnaire score: 11/16) and a substantial progress was achieved after the educational intervention (mean questionnaire score: 13/16, p = 0.001). TTR is significantly increased after the intervention (63.4 ± 22.3 vs. 74.6 ± 23.8 %; p < 0.01). The mean questionnaire score and TTR after education were not different in the intervention and the control group.
Conclusions: Knowledge about oral anticoagulant treatment and TTR is increased after the issue of the booklet in the majority of patients. However, for a small group of patients with unimproved knowledge new forms of education are needed.