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Switching from a two-tablet regimen of tenofovir/emtricitabine and efavirenz to a one-tablet regimen may affect patients' perceptions and drug management.

Type of publication Peer-reviewed
Publikationsform Original article (peer-reviewed)
Author Rotzinger A, Locatelli I, Bugnon O, Fayet Mello A, Parienti J-J, Cavassini M, Schneider M P,
Project Swiss HIV Cohort Study (SHCS)
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Original article (peer-reviewed)

Journal HIV medicine
Volume (Issue) 17(5)
Page(s) 390 - 6
Title of proceedings HIV medicine
DOI 10.1111/hiv.12345

Open Access

Type of Open Access Publisher (Gold Open Access)


Simplification of antiretroviral therapy enhances a patient's adherence but a new formulation could also lead to new adverse events and changes in daily routine. This study compared medication adherence, tolerance and satisfaction among subjects switching from a two-tablet tenofovir/emtricitabine/efavirenz regimen to a one-tablet regimen. Clinical and sociodemographic data were collected and three surveys were administered at month 0 (=switch), and then 1 and 4-6 months after the switch: the Beliefs about Medicines Questionnaire, the HIV-symptom index questionnaire, the Short HIV Treatment Satisfaction Questionnaire, the Swiss HIV Cohort Study (SHCS) two-item adherence questionnaire, and a questionnaire on daily combination antiretroviral therapy (cART) management. Medication adherence of a subgroup of subjects was routinely monitored using an electronic device (MEMS(™) ). Eighty-eight subjects gave informed consent to participate in the study. The subjects' back-switch rate was 7% (six of 88). Subjects who did not back-switch preferred the one-tablet regimen (median = 2; IQR = 1.3-2.5; on a -3 to 3 scale), but no change in adherence was found (10 of 46 nonadherent subjects; P = 1.00). The perception of treatment necessity score decreased (P = 0.004), the efavirenz blood level increased (14%; P = 0.04), and association/dissociation of cART with food intake evolved (P = 0.01) after the switch. Subjects listed equivalent numbers of symptoms during the three visits. The one-tablet regimen was preferred but the number of back-switches was not negligible. The perception of treatment necessity score decreased with the simplification of the regimen from a two-tablet to a one-tablet formulation, which could negatively impact adherence. Switching is a sensitive time in a patient's treatment life and professionals should pay particular attention to patient's perceptions of treatment during such a transition.