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Comment & Response |

Targeted Text Messaging Support for Patients With Coronary Heart Disease

Tom Kamarck, PhD1
[+] Author Affiliations
1Department of Psychology, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
JAMA. 2016;315(10):1056. doi:10.1001/jama.2016.0031.
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To the Editor Dr Chow and colleagues1 reported the results of a randomized clinical trial, the Tobacco, Exercise, and Diet Messages (TEXT ME) trial, in which large effects on cardiovascular risk factors were found for a modest text message intervention in a sample of patients with coronary heart disease. The authors conveyed the impression that they analyzed changes over time in risk factors, as when they reported “concurrent reductions” in risk factors or “change” in low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) level, systolic blood pressure, or body mass index. This language is misleading, as the data analyses focused on differences between intervention and control groups in 6-month risk factor levels rather than on treatment-related changes over time. For example, the “change in systolic blood pressure” of −7.6 mm Hg was not a change over time but a difference between the mean blood pressure readings taken between the intervention and control groups at 6 months. The only change over time in blood pressure was an increase in blood pressure in the control group. Comparing the data in Tables 1 and 2 in the article, the control group appeared to have a mean increase in systolic blood pressure of 7.3 mm Hg, whereas the experimental group showed a decrease of about 0.8 mm Hg. Targeted text message interventions may have a promising future, but it will be difficult to make progress unless findings are accurately depicted in the scientific literature.

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September 22, 2015
Clara K. Chow, MBBS, PhD; Julie Redfern, PhD; Graham S. Hillis, MBChB, PhD; Jay Thakkar, MBBS; Karla Santo, MBBS; Maree L. Hackett, PhD; Stephen Jan, PhD; Nicholas Graves, PhD; Laura de Keizer, BSc (Nutr); Tony Barry, BSc; Severine Bompoint, BSc (Stats); Sandrine Stepien, MBiostat; Robyn Whittaker, MPH; Anthony Rodgers, MBChB, PhD; Aravinda Thiagalingam, MBChB, PhD
1The George Institute for Global Health, Sydney Medical School, University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia2Westmead Hospital, Sydney, Australia
1The George Institute for Global Health, Sydney Medical School, University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia
3The George Institute for Global Health, University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia4Royal Perth Hospital, Perth, Australia5University of Western Australia, Perth
2Westmead Hospital, Sydney, Australia3The George Institute for Global Health, University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia
3The George Institute for Global Health, University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia
6Queensland University of Technology, Queensland, Australia
2Westmead Hospital, Sydney, Australia
7University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand
2Westmead Hospital, Sydney, Australia8University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia
JAMA. 2015;314(12):1255-1263. doi:10.1001/jama.2015.10945.
March 8, 2016
Jay Thakkar, MBBS; Julie Redfern, PhD; Clara K. Chow, MBBS, PhD; For the TEXT ME Investigators
1Westmead Hospital, Sydney, Australia
2The George Institute for Global Health, Sydney Australia
3University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia
JAMA. 2016;315(10):1056-1057. doi:10.1001/jama.2016.0034.
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