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Arch Hand Microsurg > Volume 18(1); 2013 > Article
Journal of the Korean Society for Surgery of the Hand 2013;18(1):37-44.
Published online March 30, 2013.
DOI: https://doi.org/10.12790/jkssh.2013.18.1.37   
Patients' Compliance for the Conservative Treatment of the Elbow Epicondylitis
Do Yun Kim, Chang Hun Lee, Bo Hyun Kim, Kwang Hyun Lee
1Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Hanyang University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea. leegh@hanyang.ac.kr
2Department of Orthopedic Surgery, KEPCO Medical Center, Seoul, Korea.
Received: 19 January 2013   • Revised: 5 March 2013   • Accepted: 6 March 2013
To measure the level of compliance to conservative treatment of epicondylitis and to identify factors affecting compliance.

This study included 104 patients who were treated non-operatively for epicondylitis of the elbow from 2009 to 2011. At the time of initial visit, all patients had thorough explanation about diagnosis, cause and pathophysiology of the disease, and were recommended to wait-and-see or to have steroid injection. At minimum of 6 month's follow-up, we performed telephone survey including patient's level of perception about the disease, maintenance of initial treatment method, and final symptom relief. Statistical analysis was performed using chi-square test, Fisher's exact test and logistic regression analysis.

Of the 104 patients, 82 (78.8%) patients maintained initial treatment methods. 23 (22.1%) remembered exact diagnosis and mechanism of the disease, 49 (47.1%) remembered cause or mechanism but not about the diagnosis, and 32 (30.8%) didn't know about the diagnosis nor mechanism. Compliances of those groups were 73.9% (17/23), 79.6% (39/49), and 81.3% (26/32), respectively, and the differences were not statistically significant (p=0.7934). Initial pain (odds ratio=0.7, p=0.0293) and the compliance (odds ratio=6.13, p=0.0015) were significant predictors of final symptom relief.

There were no factors including perception level that proved to affect the compliance. Since higher compliance led to more successful outcome, further research on factors that increase compliance may be needed.

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