PURPOSE: The aim of this study was to explore patients' experiences with their illnesses and the reasons which influenced them in not following hypertensive care recommendations (antihypertensive medication intake, physical activity, and diet changes) in primary health clinic settings.
PATIENTS AND METHODS: A qualitative methodology was applied. The data were gathered from in-depth interviews with 25 hypertensive patients attending follow-up in nine government primary health clinics in two districts (Hulu Langat and Klang) in the state of Selangor, Malaysia. The transcribed data were analyzed using thematic analysis.
RESULTS: There was evidence of lack of patient self-empowerment and community support in Malaysian society. Most of the participants did not take their antihypertensive medication or change their physical activity and diet after diagnosis. There was an agreement between the patients and the health care professionals before starting the treatment recommendation, but there lacked further counseling and monitoring. Most of the reasons given for not taking antihypertensive medication, not doing physical activity and not following diet recommendations were due to side effects or fear of the side effects of antihypertensive medication, patients' attitudes, lack of information from health care professionals and insufficient social support from their surrounding environment. We also observed the differences on these reasons for nonadherence among the three ethnic groups.
CONCLUSION: Health care professionals should move toward supporting adherence in the management of hypertensive patients by maintaining a dialogue. Patients need to be given time to enable them to overcome their inhibition of asking questions and to accept the recommendations. A self-management approach must be responsive to the needs of individuals, ethnicities, and communities.
KEYWORDS: adherence; hypertension; in-depth interview; qualitative research
Study site: Klinik kesihatan, Selangor, Malaysia
Hypertension is one of the chronic diseases with a rising trend globally, including Malaysia. Patients' own perception of their illness is a strong factor that determines their health-seeking behaviour. The objective of this study was to evaluate the illness perception of hypertensive patients and the associated factors.
AIM: We examined disease profiles of patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2D) at four different public health facilities in Malaysia to determine which site would be the most suitable for early and intensive diabetes care against diabetes-related complications.
METHODS: This study analysed 57,780 T2D patients in the Adult Diabetes Control and Management registry database in the year 2009. The four public health facilities were hospital with specialists (HS), hospital without specialists (HNS), health clinics with family medicine specialists (CS) and health clinic without doctors (CND). Descriptive analyses were used to examine age, duration of diseases, intervals from the onset of diabetes to co-morbidities (hypertension and dyslipidaemia) and complication of T2D patients at the four public health facilities.
RESULTS: Patients were significantly older in HS. Patients with T2D at HS had significantly longer duration of diabetes, hypertension and dyslipidaemia. Health clinics, both the CS and the CND, were seeing T2D patients with shorter duration of macrovascular and microvascular complications.
CONCLUSION: Public health clinics in this country managed T2D patients who were younger and at the early stage of diabetes, hypertension, dyslipidaemia and complications. Thus, primary care physicians are best positioned to provide early and intensive diabetes care for this group of T2D patients to prevent the development of diabetes-related complications.
diabetes complications; disease management; health facilities; primary health care; type 2 diabetes mellitus
BACKGROUND: To examine the effects of soy [in the form of textured soy protein (TSP) and soy-nut] on body composition in elderly women with metabolic syndrome (MetS).
METHODS: A 12-week randomized clinical trial was conducted on 75 women between 60-70 years of age with MetS in rural health clinics around Babol, Iran in 2009. The participants were randomly assigned to one of the three groups of soy-nut (35g/d), TSP (35g/d) and control. Body fat, lean mass and anthropometric indicators were measured before and after intervention, too.
RESULTS: Participants were classified as overweight and showing android fat distribution. After 12 weeks of intervention, both soy-nut and TSP groups showed an increase of non-significant in lean mass (0.9 and 0.7 kg), hip circumference (0.45 and 0.28 cm), triceps skinfold (TSF) thickness (0.87 and 0.67mm) and reduction in BMI (-0.15 and -0.33), waist circumference (-0.83 and -1.2) and body fat (-1.5% and -1.7%). Significant increase in the mean change of TSF and lean mass was observed in the users of soy-nut compared to the control group (P<0.01, P<0.05).
CONCLUSION: 12-week intervention of soy had a mild favorable effect on body composition in elderly women with MetS.
KEYWORDS: Body composition; Metabolic syndrome; Older women; Soy
PURPOSE: A cross sectional descriptive study, which involved government hospitals and health clinics from Peninsular Malaysia sought to identify the continuing professional education (CPE) needs and their readiness for E-learning. This paper focuses on the first phase of that study that aimed to determine the factors that influence nurses' participation in CPE.
METHODS: Multistage cluster sampling was used to recruit 1,000 nurses randomly from 12 hospitals and 24 health clinics from four states in Peninsular Malaysia who agreed to be involved. The respondent rate was 792 (79.2%), of which 562 (80%) had participated in CPE in the last 12 months.
RESULTS: Findings suggested that updating knowledge and providing quality care are the most important factors that motivate participation in CPE, with respective means of 4.34 and 4.39. All the mean scores for educational opportunity were less than 3.0. Chi-square tests were used to test the association of demographic data and CPE participation. All demographical data were significantly associated with CPE participation, except marital status.
CONCLUSIONS: Implementation of mandatory CPE is considered an important measure to increase nurse's participation in CPE. However, effective planning that takes into consideration the learning needs of nurses is recommended.
Delirium in the elderly is a challenging and under-recognized problem in the community. Early detection and management improves outcomes and quality of life for the elders with delirium at home.1 Family physicians (FP) play a key role in the assessments, early identification, and management of delirium and in the support and education of patients and their family caregivers.1 Clinical analysis of this case illustrates the bio-psychosocial spiritual model of approach to management of delirium in an elderly patient in the home setting.
Background: Psychoeducation has shown promising benefits in managing patients with schizophrenia. In Malaysia, the use of psychoeducation is rather limited and its impact indeterminate.
Aims: To assess the effectiveness of a structured psychoeducation programme for the community in improving caregiver knowledge, decreasing caregivers’ burden, reducing patients’ readmission and defaulter follow up rates.
Method: In a controlled interventional study, 109 caregivers were included, 54 and 55 in the intervention and control groups respectively. Caregivers were assessed at baseline, 3 and 6 months post-intervention for knowledge and burden. Patients were monitored for relapse and defaulting follow up in the clinic.
Results: Caregivers in the intervention group showed significant improvement in knowledge, reduction in burden in assistance in daily living (severity) and a reduced defaulter rate was seen in the patients’ follow up.
Conclusion: The findings shows that structured psychoeducation programme among caregivers has the potential to improve outcome of care for patients with schizophrenia.
Keywords: Schizophrenia; Psychoeducation; Community; Caregiver Questionnaire: Family Burden Interview Schedule–Short Form (FBIS/SF)
Large population surveys in Malaysia have consistently shown minimal improvement of blood pressure control rates over the last 10 years. Poor adherence to antihypertensive medication has been recognized as a major reason for poor control of hypertension. This study aimed to describe the prescribing pattern of antihypertensive agents in 2 public primary care clinics and assess its appropriateness in relation to current evidence and guidelines.
A cross-sectional study was conducted on patients attending a primary care facility to determine the prevalence of self reported hearing loss using a single question, "Do you have hearing loss?" Pure tone audiometry was performed to compare the accuracy of the self report. A total of 111 patients were recruited. The prevalence of self reported hearing loss using a single question and pure tone audiometry was 24.3% and 36.9% respectively. By using pure tone audiometry at a cut-off-level of 25 dBHL (decibels Hearing level), the single question yielded a sensitivity of 41.4% and specificity of 85.0%.The single question performed better at 40 dBHL pure tone audiometry with sensitivity of 55.0% and specificity of 82.0%. In conclusion, the prevalence of hearing loss in elderly was high and the single question self reported hearing loss performed satisfactorily with moderate hearing loss.
This case reports a 57-year-old lady presented with cough of two months duration despite repeated treatments from multiple general practitioners. It took her another two months to know her diagnoses and a further couple of months to be relieved of her cough and became asymptomatic. Chronic cough management in primary care often needs an empiric integrative approach and requires good doctor-patient rapport with informed follow ups and continuity of care to be successful.
The objective of this study was to correlate, differentiate and validate the self-reported smoking status of educated young adults with urinary biomarkers (i.e. nicotine and cotinine). Freshmen students were recruited on voluntary basis. They filled-up self-administered questionnaire and their urine samples were collected for analysis. The urinary nicotine (UN) and cotinine (UC) were measured by gas chromatograph-mass spectrometry. Smokers, non-smokers and ex-smokers were found to be both significantly correlated and different in their UN and UC levels. UC level of 25ng/ml was the optimal cut-off to differentiate smokers from non-smokers. Using this cut-off value, the prevalence of smoking among the students was found to be higher (15.4%) than the self-reported data (14.3%). UC is useful in validating individual recent smoking history and the cut-off could serve as a marker for assessing the clinical impact of smoking and environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) exposure on human health.
Study site: university health centre, Universiti SainsMalaysia (USM), Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
BACKGROUND: Optimum management of dyspepsia in primary care is a debatable subject. Testing for Helicobacter pylori (HP) has been recommended in primary care as this strategy will cure most underlying peptic ulcer disease and prevent future gastro duodenal disease.
METHODS: A total of 98 patients completed Modified Glasgow Dyspepsia Severity Score Questionnaire (MGDSSQ) at initial presentation before undergoing the 13Carbon Urea Breath Test (UBT) for HP. Those with positive UBT received Eradication Therapy with oral Omeprazole 20 mg twice daily, Clarithromycin 500 mg daily and Amoxycillin 500 mg twice daily for one week followed by Omeprazole to be completed for another 4 to 6 weeks. Those with negative UBT received empirical treatment with oral Omeprazole 20 mg twice daily for 4 to 6 weeks. Patients were assessed again using the MGDSSQ at the completion of treatment and one month after stopping treatment.
RESULTS: The prevalence of dyspepsia at Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia-Primary Care Centre was 1.12% (124/11037), out of which 23.5% (23/98) was due to HP. Post treatment assessment in both HP (95.7%, 22/23) and non HP-related dyspepsia (86.7%, 65/75) groups showed complete or almost complete resolution of dyspepsia. Only about 4.3% (1/23) in the HP related dyspepsia and 13.3% (10/75) in the non HP group required endoscopy.
CONCLUSION: The prevalence of dyspepsia due to HP in this primary care centre was 23.5%. Detection of HP related dyspepsia yielded good treatment outcomes (95.7%).
The quality of physician prescribing is suboptimal. Patients are at risk of potentially adverse reaction because of inappropriate or writing error in the drug prescriptions. We assess the effect of "group academic detailing" to reduce writing drug name using brand name and short form in the drug prescriptions in a controlled study at two primary health care clinics in Negeri Sembilan. Five medical officers in Ampangan Health Clinic received an educational intervention consisting of group academic detailing from the resident Family Medicine Specialist, as well as a drug summary list using generic names. The academic detailing focused on appropriate prescribing habit and emphasized on using the full generic drug name when writing the drug prescription. Analyses were based on 3371 prescriptions that were taken from two clinics. The other health clinic was for comparison. The prescribing rates were assessed by reviewing the prescriptions (two months each for pre- and post-intervention phase). Statistically significant reduction in writing prescription using brand name and using short form were observed after the educational intervention. Writing prescription using brand name for pre- and postintervention phase were 33.9% and 19.0% (postintervention vs pre-intervention RR 0.56, 95% CI 0.48 to 0.66) in the intervention clinic. Prescription writing using any short form for pre- and post-intervention phase were 49.2% and 29.2% (post-intervention vs pre-intervention RR 0.59, 95% CI 0.53 to 0.67). This low cost educational intervention focusing on prescribing habit produced an important reduction in writing prescription using brand name and short form. Group detailing appears to be feasible in the public health care system in Malaysia and possibly can be used for other prescribing issues in primary care.
Schizophrenia is one of the most incapacitating forms of mental disorder that runs a chronic and relapsing course. It typically starts in adolescence or early adulthood and can be life-long. It is more common in people with learning disabilities than in the general population. Its prodromal features include depression, anxiety, suspiciousness, social isolation and bizarre behaviour. It may result in significant functional, social and economic impairments. The care of patients with schizophrenia places a considerable burden on all carers including patient's family, health and social services. Treatment includes pharmacotherapy and psychosocial interventions. In this case report we describe a thirteen-year-old patient with schizophrenia who has a background history of mental retardation.
Study site: Family medicine clinic, Universiti Malaya Medical Centre (UMMC)
A healthy 27 year old Para 3 presenting with abnormal menstruation without a period of amenorrhoea was diagnosed to have left tubal ectopic pregnancy after vaginal examination and abdominal ultrasonography. The case illustrates the need for careful history taking and the need for considering ectopic pregnancy in women in the reproductive age group, who have abnormal menstruation even if they are on contraception.
OBJECTIVES: Cultural practices have been found to positively impact the mothering experience. This study sought to identify the relationship between sociocultural practices and postpartum depression (PPD) in a cohort of Iranian women for the first time.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: In a longitudinal cohort design, 2279 pregnant women attending primary health centers of Mazandaran province in Iran were recruited using stratified random sampling method. Data were collected using the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale and researchers developed validated cultural practices questionnaire at 3 months after delivery. Data were analyzed using Chi-square test and multiple logistic regression models.
RESULTS: The prevalence of PPD was 19% among 1910 women who were followed postdelivery in this study. Cultural practices were not associated with lower odds of PPD in multiple logistic regression model after adjustment for all sociodemographic factors. The results of this study do not also provide any evidence to support that sex of baby is associated with the greater risk of PPD.
CONCLUSIONS: Cultural practices could not be perceived as protective mechanisms that protect women from PPD in this traditional society. However, health professionals should be familiar with postpartum beliefs and practices that could support mothers in the postpartum period.
KEYWORDS: culture; depression; postpartum; practices
Objectives: Antimicrobial resistance is associated with irrational use of antibiotics in general practice. We aimed to assess the frequency with which patients with Upper Respiratory Tract Infections were prescribed with antibiotics and the patterns of antibiotic prescription at primary healthcare centres in Malaysia.
Methods: The study targeted all primary public healthcare centres in the district of Kota Setar, Kedah, Malaysia. A retrospective prescription analysis was conducted whereby prescriptions from 1st January 2014 to 31st March 2014 were screened and retrieved for antibiotics prescribed for upper respiratory infections. The data was entered into Microsoft Excel spread sheet, and exported to Statistical Package for Social Sciences, version 20 for further analysis. Frequencies and percentages were used to summarize the data. The Jonckheere–Terpstra test was used to evaluate the trend of antibiotic prescription. Where significant associations were reported, effect size was calculated by using Kendall tau correlation coefficient. P value of <0.05 was considered to be of statistical significance.
Results: For the period of three months, 123,524 prescriptions were screened and analysed. 2270 (31.8%) prescriptions contained antibiotics prescribed for all URTIs visits. Among all antibiotics, macrolides were the most commonly prescribed antibiotic, constituting of 61% (n=1404) of total antibiotics prescribed for all cases. The Jonckheere–Terpstra test revealed a statistical relationship between prescribers and the diagnosis of the disease (p=0·001). Furthermore, a weak positive trend of association was reported with FMS being more accurate in diagnosis followed by MOs and AMOs (τ=0·122).
Conclusions: Practicing physicians should adhere to the standard treatment practices, as antibiotic use in viral aetiology is ineffective, and encourages the persistence development of resistance. A comprehensive development of national antibiotic stewardship program is recommended to ensure organised and regulated control of antibiotic use in Malaysia.
Objectives: The aim of the study was to explore the association of waist circumference with glycaemic control in Malaysian patients with type 2 diabetes.
Methods: We utilised data of type 2 diabetes patients followed up in Malaysian public sector primary care clinics contained in the National Diabetes Registry in the year 2012. The variable of interest was poor glycaemic control, defined as HbA1c≥ 6.5%. Multiple logistic regression was used to explore the association between glycaemic control and waist circumference, which was adjusted for age, sex, duration of diabetes, systolic blood pressure, total cholesterol, use of insulin and other medications.
Results: A total of 98,825 patients with type 2 diabetes were included in the study. The mean age of patients was 59.9 years (SD: 10.9) and 38.9% were males. The mean duration of diabetes was 6.8 years (SD: 5.0) and 76.2% of patients had HbA1c ≥ 6.5%. The mean waist circumference was 94.0 cm (SD: 11.8) for male and 90.7 cm (SD: 11.8) for female; while 78.3% of the patients had waist circumference above the cut-off (≥ 90 cm for men and ≥ 80 cm for women). Larger waist circumference was found to be significantly associated with HbA1c≥ 6.5% (adj. OR 1.009; p< 0.001; 95% CI: 1.007–1.011) after adjusting for confounding factors.
Conclusions: Analysis showed that glycaemic control was poorer in patients with higher waist circumference than in patients with lower waist circumference.
INTRODUCTION: Hypertension is highly prevalent in the older people. Chronic disease care is a major burden in the public primary care clinics in Malaysia. Good blood pressure (BP) control is needed to reduce the morbidity and mortality of cardiovascular disease (CVD). This study aimed to determine the status of BP control and its associated factors among older people with hypertension in public primary care clinics.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: A cross-sectional study on hypertensive patients aged 18 years and above was conducted in six public primary care clinics in Federal Territory, Malaysia. A total of 1107 patients were selected via systematic random sampling. Data from 441 (39.8%) patients aged 60 years and more were used in this analysis. BP control was determined from the average of two BP readings measured twice at an interval of 5 min. For patients without diabetes, poor BP control was defined as BP of ≥140/90 mm Hg and ≥150/90 for the patients aged 80 years and more. For patients with diabetes, poor control was defined as BP of ≥140/80 mm Hg.
RESULTS: A total of 51.7% (n = 228) of older patients had poor BP control. The factors associated with BP control were education level (p = 0.003), presence of comorbidities (p = 0.015), number of antihypertensive agents (p = 0.001) and number of total medications used (p = 0.002). Patients with lower education (less than secondary education) (OR = 1.7, p = 0.008) and the use of three or more antihypertensive agents (OR = 2.0, p = 0.020) were associated with poor BP control.
CONCLUSION: Among older people with hypertension, those having lower education level, or using three or more antihypertensive agents would require more attention on their BP control.
INTRODUCTION: Regular physical activity is an important aspect of self-management among older people with type 2 diabetes but many remain inactive. Interventions to improve physical activity levels have been studied but few studies have evaluated the effects of personalized feedback (PF) or peer support (PS); and there was no study on older people of Asian heritage. Hence, this trial evaluated whether PF only or combined with PS improves physical activity among older Malays with type 2 diabetes (T2DM) compared to usual care only.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: A three-arm randomized controlled trial was conducted in a primary healthcare clinic in Malaysia. Sixty-nine sedentary Malays aged 60 years and older with T2DM who received usual diabetes care were randomized to PF or PS interventions or as controls for 12 weeks with follow-ups at weeks 24 and 36. Intervention groups performed unsupervised walking activity and received written feedback on physical activity. The PS group also received group and telephone contacts from trained peer mentors. The primary outcome was pedometer steps. Secondary outcomes were self-reported physical activity, cardiovascular risk factors, cardiorespiratory fitness, balance, quality of life, and psychosocial wellbeing.
RESULTS: Fifty-two (75.4%) completed the 36-week study. The PS group showed greater daily pedometer readings than the PF and controls (p = 0.001). The PS group also had greater improvement in weekly duration (p