Journal of Public Health

, Volume 27, Issue 5, pp 561–567 | Cite as

Utilization of short message service (SMS) in non-pharmacological management of hypertension. A pilot study in an URBAN public hospital of Multan, Pakistan

  • Anees ur RehmanEmail author
  • Farrukh Naeem
  • Sameen Abbas
  • Fizzah Ashfaq
  • Mohamed Azmi Ahmad Hassali
Original Article



To investigate the effectiveness of short message service (SMS) in promotion of non-pharmacological treatment approach in hypertension patients.

Subjects and methods

A prospective, randomized control study to measure the effect of short message service in improving self-management of hypertension by educating patients. One hundred and twenty hypertensive patients who had manual sphygmomanometers were selected, and were divided into two groups, i.e., an intervention group and a control group. But only the intervention group had mobile numbers of related health care professionals for SMS assistance. All of them were briefed on how they can improve HTN control by achieving a healthy life style, proper diet, and exercise (non-pharmacological approach in addition to pharmacological therapy). Patients were educated about the non-pharmacological approach for managing hypertension at each clinic visit, and were sent regular text messages about healthy diet, exercise, and adherence. Apart from educational text messages, reminder SMSs were also sent to them twice daily to remind them about taking their medicines. Patients’ feedback was collected to assess improvement in adherence and reduction in blood pressure.


At the end of the study, the intervention group showed better hypertension control, with systolic blood pressure (SBP) declining by 8 mmHg to 141.15 ± 5.73 mmHg, and diastolic blood pressure (DBP) declining by 6 mmHg to 88 ± 3.97 mmHg. The control group showed a 2 mmHg and 3 mmHg decline in SBP and DBP respectively.


SMS proved to be very useful to enhance adherence to non-pharmacological treatment of HTN (hypertension). It also improved patient compliance.


SMS Hypertension Non-pharmacological HTN management Compliance 



The author wishes to thank the staff of outpatient ward of the hospital, especially Dr Muhammad Sohail the Chief Pharmacist of the Ch. Pervaiz Elahi Institute of Cardiology, for their support and guidance during the project.


This was a self-sponsored project and no funding was obtained from any donor agency.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

There is no conflict of interest among authors.

Ethical approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki Declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed consent

Informed consent was obtained from each patient before participation in the study.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Discipline of Social and Administrative Pharmacy, School of Pharmaceutical SciencesUniversity Sains MalaysiaPenangMalaysia
  2. 2.Faculty of PharmacyBahauddin Zakariya UniversityMultanPakistan
  3. 3.Department of PharmacyQuaid e Azam UniversityIslamabadPakistan
  4. 4.Institute of Food Science and NutritionBahauddin Zakariya UniversityMultanPakistan

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