Get the Most Out of Your Medicines

On your journey to a healthy heart, you may be prescribed medicines and therapies to help you recover and maintain heart health. Here we discuss the importance of taking medications as directed, methods to get the most out of your “meds,” and options for paying for therapies that have proven successful in helping patients live well after a heart disease diagnosis.

Medication Adherence and Safety

One of your health care team’s roles is to prescribe medicines and therapies known to help us recover from heart disease and maintain cardiovascular health. Our role is to take them as directed. But we don’t always play our part the way we should. This is a nationwide problem with high personal and societal costs.

Medication adherence—a fancy phrase for taking your pills as directed—can be just as important to your recovery after a heart event as complying with diet and exercise guidance. Medications are often expensive but the costs of hospitalization are far higher to our pocketbooks and our overall health.

When we don’t take our medicines as instructed, we could wind up back in the hospital. These readmissions are financially costly and put us at risk for more cardiovascular events in the future.

With expanded insurance options and other assistance, medications for heart disease are more accessible to patients than ever.

Common Heart Medications

Your heart issues are unique to you, and only your health care team knows which specific medications you need. However, most heart medications fall under certain broad categories. The table below describes the most common heart medications and their uses.