Hypertension | Measuring Adherence to Control Hypertension

Hypertension research study

What is the primary objective of this study?

The purpose of this study is to test whether accurately measuring patients' adherence to their blood pressure medications with electronic pillbox monitors and then providing clinicians with this information can improve the clinical management of uncontrolled hypertension.

Who is eligible to participate?

Inclusion criteria - established diagnosis of hypertension - prescribed at least one blood pressure (BP) medication - at least two consecutive clinic visits with elevated BP according to Joint National Committee (JNC-7) guidelines (i.e., BP ≥ 140/90 mmHg or ≥ 130/80 mmHg if diabetes or chronic kidney disease) - 18 to 80 years old - at least one prior visit with a clinician enrolled in the study Exclusion criteria - severe mental illness - resided in a long-term care facility - unable to use the electronic adherence device due to physical or cognitive impairment - non-English or non-Spanish speaking - unavailable for follow-up

Which medical condition, disease, disorder, syndrome, illness, or injury is researched?


Study Interventions

Interventions can include giving participants drugs, medical devices, procedures, vaccines, and other products that are either investigational or already available or noninvasive approaches such as surveys, education, and interviews.

Behavioral:Disclosure of adherence report to clinicianDuring clinical visits with patients with uncontrolled hypertension, clinicians will be provided with a quantitative summary of their patients' electronically-monitored adherence to antihypertensive medications. The summary will be in the form of a report that fits onto one page and lists the percent of days patients correctly adhered to each of the monitored BP medications and the mean adherence to the whole regimen. Adherence data will be provided for the 7-days and 1-month prior to the clinic visit. The report will also show the number of days patients exceeded the recommended number of pill container openings. Clinicians in the intervention arm will get a brief training (<10 minutes) in the interpretation and use of the report at the time of enrollment.

Device:MedSignals pillbox(Non-experimental) Patients will be given an electronic pillbox. The device records the date and time when each compartment is opened. Adherence to each BP medication was calculated as the percent of doses taken as prescribed. Patients are informed that their adherence was recorded by the electronic pillbox and might be shared with their clinician depending on randomization.

Study Arms

Research studies and clinical trials typically have two or more research arms. An arm is a group of people who receive the same treatment in the study.

Concealment (control)Clinicians in the control arm will not receive any electronically-monitored medication adherence information (collected via MedSignals pillbox) at the 1-month visit and will be expected to manage hypertension according to their usual care.

Disclosure (intervention)Disclosure of adherence report to clinician: At clinic visits with patients with uncontrolled hypertension, clinicians in the intervention arm were provided with a quantitative summary of their patients' electronic adherence to antihypertensive medications (collected via MedSignals pillbox).

Study Status


Start Date: January 2011

Completed Date: July 2014

Phase: N/A

Type: Interventional


Primary Outcome: Percentage of Visits With Appropriate Hypertension Management

Secondary Outcome: Percentage of Visits With Regimen Intensification During 1-month Visit, Adherent in Week Prior to Outcome Visit, Only

Study sponsors, principal investigator, and references

Principal Investigator: Ian M Kronish, MD, MPH

Lead Sponsor: Columbia University

Collaborator: National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI)

More information:

Moise N, Davidson KW, Chaplin W, Shea S, Kronish I. Depression and clinical inertia in patients with uncontrolled hypertension. JAMA Intern Med. 2014 May;174(5):818-9. doi: 10.1001/jamainternmed.2014.115.

Kronish IM, Moise N, McGinn T, Quan Y, Chaplin W, Gallagher BD, Davidson KW. An Electronic Adherence Measurement Intervention to Reduce Clinical Inertia in the Treatment of Uncontrolled Hypertension: The MATCH Cluster Randomized Clinical Trial. J Gen Intern Med. 2016 Nov;31(11):1294-1300. doi: 10.1007/s11606-016-3757-4. Epub 2016 Jun 2.

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