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People Quit More Often if Pills Look Different

People may be more likely to stop taking generic drugs if the color or shape changes, a new study suggests. Generic medicines may change color and shape if made by different manufacturers. This is more likely to occur if pharmacies switch suppliers or people switch pharmacies. In the new study, researchers looked at health insurance records for 11,500 people. All of them had heart attacks between 2006 and 2011. Each person received a new prescription for at least one generic heart drug. The four types were beta-blockers, ACE inhibitors, angiotensin receptor blockers and statins. During the next year, 29% of those in the study had at least one pill change to a different shape or size. People were 34% more likely to stop taking a medicine if the color changed. They were 66% more likely to quit if the pill shape changed.

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