Jones et al described the HEEADSSS assessment of an adolescent requiring long-term anticoagulation. A similar approach can be used to personalize the education of an adolescent or young adult about management of a complex medical condition requiring long-term management. The authors are from the University of Melbourne and Royal Children's Hospital in Melbourne, Australia

Patient selection: adolescent requiring long-term anticoagulation therapy


Intervention: structured anticoagulation education


Outcomes: better education with greater awareness of barriers and enablers; more personalized care that is relevant to the patient; improved adherence


Structured education is based on the Acronym HEEADSSS:

(H): home

(E): education and employment

(E): eating and exercise

(A): activities with peers

(D): drugs (smoking, alcohol, substance abuse)

(S): sexual activity

(S): suicide and depression

(S): safety (safety gear; violence avoidance)


The intervention should:

(1) recommend lifestyle modifications to avoid or to reduce problems and complications

(2) improve psychosocial well-being

(3) enhance self-management skills and a sense of control

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