Is the patient activation measure associated with adherence to colonoscopy after a positive fecal occult blood test result?

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Abstract

Background: Colorectal cancer (CRC) is a major cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide, but these can be reduced significantly with population screening using annual fecal occult blood tests (FOBT)A positive FOBT requires timely follow-up with colonoscopy to maximize screening benefits. Several barriers to follow-up have been identified, with patient health behaviors and choices comprising a significant part of these. The Patient Activation Measure (PAM) assesses knowledge, skills, beliefs, and confidence in managing health. Increased patient activation is related to positive health outcomes. The aim of this study is to examine the association between patient empowerment, as reflected in the PAM, and follow-up colonoscopy within 90 days of a positive FOBT result. Methods: This case-control study included 429 patients with a positive FOBT, 174 who had a colonoscopy within 90 days, and 255 who did not. Participants completed a PAM telephone questionnaire (Cronbach's α = 0.785). We used both univariate and multivariate analyses to examine the effect of the PAM score as on the likelihood of undergoing colonoscopy, after adjusting for the independent variables. Results: In this study we did not find a significant association between PAM and adherence to colonoscopy, using both univariate and multivariate analyses (p =.334 and p =.697, whether PAM was defined as a continuous or as categorical, respectively). Conclusions: This study was the first to examine the association between patient empowerment, as reflected in the patient activation measure, and adherence to colonoscopy after a positive FOBT. The findings did not support such an association. Further examination is required to clarify the relation between patient empowerment and activation and personal healthcare in general, and in the Israeli population in particular. Future policy should include specific, technical interventions to improve FOBT follow-up among all groups, until the patient-related barriers are better understood. Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT02534142 https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT02534142

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Azulay, R., Valinsky, L., Hershkowitz, F., & Magnezi, R. (2018). Is the patient activation measure associated with adherence to colonoscopy after a positive fecal occult blood test result? Israel Journal of Health Policy Research, 7(1). https://doi.org/10.1186/s13584-018-0270-8

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