PURPOSE. The purpose of this study was to examine the roles of adherence attitude to antidepressants and patient education as mediators in mediating patients' attitudes toward antidepressant use. DESIGN AND METHODS. A sample of 201 outpatients, 50 years of age or older, with major depressive disorder, completed a drug use questionnaire, attitudes toward and patient education about antidepressants questionnaire, and Adherence Attitude Inventory. FINDINGS. Attitudes toward antidepressants were positively associated to antidepressant use, an association explained by the mediating variable, patient education about antidepressants. Adherence attitudes to antidepressants were a mediator that accounted to a significant degree for the causal relationship between attitudes toward antidepressants and antidepressant use. PRACTICE IMPLICATIONS. Adequate patient education and an understanding of patients' adherence attitude to antidepressant use are needed in nursing practice to reduce patients' uncertainty about treatment and increase successful treatment.
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