Patients have high confidence in self-testing INR

Patients have high confidence in self-testing INR

(HealthDay)—Most patients have high confidence in self-testing their international normalized ratio (INR), according to a study published online Feb. 23 in the Journal of Clinical Nursing.

Anne Grogan, from St. James's Hospital in Dublin, and colleagues surveyed 330 patients from three study sites who were prescribed warfarin and used INR self-testing. The survey assessed patient profile and patients' usage, issues, perceptions, confidence, and satisfaction with the self-testing system. Data were included for 178 respondents.

The researchers found that patients had high confidence in self-testing (90 percent). A high level of satisfaction was expressed with the support received, but patients perceived the need for more information in relation to support groups, side effects of warfarin, , and needle disposal. Seventy-three percent of patients agreed that they felt confident to adjust their own warfarin level. None of the patient profile factors affected this confidence. The greatest advantages of self-testing were reduced burden, more autonomy, convenience, and ease of use. Cost and communication issues were cited as the main disadvantages.

"Patients are highly satisfied with self-testing their INR and the freedom and autonomy it gives them," the authors write. "The majority of who self-tested also identified a to move to the next level of empowerment—self-management."

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