ISSN 1470-3947 (print) | ISSN 1479-6848 (online)

Endocrine Abstracts (2004) 7 P200

Patients' knowledge and satisfaction on the management of steroid replacement therapy

LA Breen

Diabetes and Endocrinology Day Centre, Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Trust, London, UKing, St Thomas' Hospital, London, UK.

The objectives of this study were to assess patients' knowledge on the management of steroid replacement therapy (SRT) and explore patient satisfaction with the management and education given on SRT.

The study used a quantitative before and after one group design. Self-administered questionnaires were utilised for data collection (baseline and one month after the intervention of the Patient Information Leaflet (PIS) on Managing SRT) to assess knowledge and satisfaction. Thirty-nine patients with > 6month duration of adrenal insufficiency (AI) were selected from the Endocrine Outpatient clinic (3 Addisons, 36 Secondary AI- 4 with bilateral adrenalectomy). LREC approval was obtained for this study. Both the questionnaires and PIS were designed by the researcher.

At baseline 90% of the patient's answered all questions on dose adjustment during intercurrent illness incorrectly decreasing to 54% post intervention yet 69% of patients at baseline perceived they were able to manage their SRT appropriately, increasing to 82% post intervention. 90% of patients reported having been given a steroid card yet only 64%-67% carried it with them at all times. Satisfaction on the management of SRT went from 77% to 90% post intervention and education from 49% at baseline to 90% post intervention. The need for information decreased from 67% to 28% post intervention with 98% of patients finding the leaflet helpful.

The PIS leaflet on managing SRT improved patients' knowledge and educational satisfaction. The combined use of verbal instruction and written information is recommended in order to improve patients' knowledge and satisfaction on SRT and improve retention and recall. Clinicians should not rely on the patients' perceived level of knowledge when assessing the need for further education on the management of SRT. The Endocrine Specialist Nurse plays an important role in undertaking and developing patient education in AI.

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