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Quantifying age-related differences in information processing behaviors when viewing prescription drug labels.

Sundar RP, Becker MW, Bello NM, Bix L - PLoS ONE (2012)

Bottom Line: During viewing, participants often failed to attend to the PWLs; this effect was more pronounced for older than younger participants.However, when memory performance was conditionalized on whether or not the participant had fixated the PWL, these age-related differences in memory were no longer significant, suggesting that the difference in memory performance between groups was attributable to differences in attention rather than differences in memory encoding or recall.These data provide a compelling case that understanding consumers' attentive behavior is crucial to developing an effective labeling standard for prescription drugs.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: School of Packaging, Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan, United States of America.

ABSTRACT
Adverse drug events (ADEs) are a significant problem in health care. While effective warnings have the potential to reduce the prevalence of ADEs, little is known about how patients access and use prescription labeling. We investigated the effectiveness of prescription warning labels (PWLs, small, colorful stickers applied at the pharmacy) in conveying warning information to two groups of patients (young adults and those 50+). We evaluated the early stages of information processing by tracking eye movements while participants interacted with prescription vials that had PWLs affixed to them. We later tested participants' recognition memory for the PWLs. During viewing, participants often failed to attend to the PWLs; this effect was more pronounced for older than younger participants. Older participants also performed worse on the subsequent memory test. However, when memory performance was conditionalized on whether or not the participant had fixated the PWL, these age-related differences in memory were no longer significant, suggesting that the difference in memory performance between groups was attributable to differences in attention rather than differences in memory encoding or recall. This is important because older adults are recognized to be at greater risk for ADEs. These data provide a compelling case that understanding consumers' attentive behavior is crucial to developing an effective labeling standard for prescription drugs.

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Related in: MedlinePlus

Least Square Mean Estimates (across subjects) of percentage of the probability of fixation by zone and age group.Error bars represent the between subjects standard error.
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pone-0038819-g002: Least Square Mean Estimates (across subjects) of percentage of the probability of fixation by zone and age group.Error bars represent the between subjects standard error.

Mentions: A significant age group by label zone interaction was identified on the probability of noticing a zone (P< 0.0088) (See Figure 2). More specifically, the probability of noticing a PWL was lower for the older (Estimated LSM ± SEM 54.0%±17.6%) relative to the younger population (91.8%±6.1%; P = 0.0396); yet, no evidence for age differences were apparent on the probability of noticing the white prescription label (100.0%±8.6E−7% for the older population and 100.0%±3.3E−7 for the younger population). This was also true for the probability of noticing the cap; although the relative probability of noticing the vial cap was decreased in both populations, the decrease was more pronounced in the older population (2.4%±1.95%), when compared with the younger (24.4%±13.0%; 0.0197). Within the PWL, no effect of color was evident on the probability of noticing (P = 0.9941).


Quantifying age-related differences in information processing behaviors when viewing prescription drug labels.

Sundar RP, Becker MW, Bello NM, Bix L - PLoS ONE (2012)

Least Square Mean Estimates (across subjects) of percentage of the probability of fixation by zone and age group.Error bars represent the between subjects standard error.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC3375290&req=5

pone-0038819-g002: Least Square Mean Estimates (across subjects) of percentage of the probability of fixation by zone and age group.Error bars represent the between subjects standard error.
Mentions: A significant age group by label zone interaction was identified on the probability of noticing a zone (P< 0.0088) (See Figure 2). More specifically, the probability of noticing a PWL was lower for the older (Estimated LSM ± SEM 54.0%±17.6%) relative to the younger population (91.8%±6.1%; P = 0.0396); yet, no evidence for age differences were apparent on the probability of noticing the white prescription label (100.0%±8.6E−7% for the older population and 100.0%±3.3E−7 for the younger population). This was also true for the probability of noticing the cap; although the relative probability of noticing the vial cap was decreased in both populations, the decrease was more pronounced in the older population (2.4%±1.95%), when compared with the younger (24.4%±13.0%; 0.0197). Within the PWL, no effect of color was evident on the probability of noticing (P = 0.9941).

Bottom Line: During viewing, participants often failed to attend to the PWLs; this effect was more pronounced for older than younger participants.However, when memory performance was conditionalized on whether or not the participant had fixated the PWL, these age-related differences in memory were no longer significant, suggesting that the difference in memory performance between groups was attributable to differences in attention rather than differences in memory encoding or recall.These data provide a compelling case that understanding consumers' attentive behavior is crucial to developing an effective labeling standard for prescription drugs.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: School of Packaging, Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan, United States of America.

ABSTRACT
Adverse drug events (ADEs) are a significant problem in health care. While effective warnings have the potential to reduce the prevalence of ADEs, little is known about how patients access and use prescription labeling. We investigated the effectiveness of prescription warning labels (PWLs, small, colorful stickers applied at the pharmacy) in conveying warning information to two groups of patients (young adults and those 50+). We evaluated the early stages of information processing by tracking eye movements while participants interacted with prescription vials that had PWLs affixed to them. We later tested participants' recognition memory for the PWLs. During viewing, participants often failed to attend to the PWLs; this effect was more pronounced for older than younger participants. Older participants also performed worse on the subsequent memory test. However, when memory performance was conditionalized on whether or not the participant had fixated the PWL, these age-related differences in memory were no longer significant, suggesting that the difference in memory performance between groups was attributable to differences in attention rather than differences in memory encoding or recall. This is important because older adults are recognized to be at greater risk for ADEs. These data provide a compelling case that understanding consumers' attentive behavior is crucial to developing an effective labeling standard for prescription drugs.

Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus