Event-based prospective memory is independently associated with self-report of medication management in older adults

Steven Woods, Michael Weinborn, B.R. Maxwell, A. Gummery, K. Mo, A. Ng, Romola Bucks

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Identifying potentially modifiable risk factors for medication non-adherence in older adults is important in order to enhance screening and intervention efforts designed to improve medication-taking behavior and health outcomes. The current study sought to determine the unique contribution of prospective memory (PM) (i.e. remembering to remember) to successful self-reported medication management in older adults.Methods: Sixty-five older adults with current medication prescriptions completed a comprehensive research evaluation of sociodemographic, psychiatric, and neurocognitive functioning, which included the memory for adherence to medication scale (MAMS), prospective and retrospective memory questionnaire (PRMQ), and a performance-based measure of PM that measured both semantically related and semantically unrelated cue-intention (i.e. when-what) pairings.Results: A series of hierarchical regressions controlling for biopsychosocial, other neurocognitive, and medication-related factors showed that elevated complaints on the PM scale of the PRMQ and worse performance on an objective semantically unrelated event-based PM task were independent predictors of poorer medication adherence as measured by the MAMS.Conclusions: PM plays an important role in self-report of successful medication management among older adults. Findings may have implications for screening for older individuals at risk of non-adherence, as well as the development of PM-based interventions to improve medication adherence and, ultimately, long-term health outcomes in older adults. © 2014 Taylor & Francis.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)745-753
JournalAging and Mental Health
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2014


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