Utilization of short message service (SMS) in non-pharmacological management of hypertension. A pilot study in an URBAN public hospital of Multan, Pakistan
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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.
KeywordsSMS 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.
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 was obtained from each patient before participation in the study.
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