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Commentary

Long-term adherence to antiretroviral therapy in resource-limited settings: a bitter pill to swallow

David R Bangsberg, Edward J Mills

Corresponding author name: Edward J Mills
Corresponding author e-mail: edward.mills@uottawa.ca

Citation: Antiviral Therapy 2013; 18:25-28
doi: 10.3851/IMP2536

Date accepted: 07 November 2012
Date published online: 29 January 2013

Abstract

Adherence to antiretroviral therapy is an important predictor of long-term treatment success. Adherence can be differentiated between early adherence challenges, that are about integrating pill-taking into daily life, and long-term adherence, where patients struggle to maintain clinical connections and interrupt clinical care and medication use. In resource-limited settings, treatment interruptions may be more useful predictors of patient outcome than pill-taking alone. Interventions that are aimed at providing support to patients and their individual challenges to prevent interruptions in treatment and care may have a greater impact over time on clinically important outcomes than interventions targeted only at pill-taking behaviours.

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