Impact of pill organizers and blister packs on adherence to pill taking in two vitamin supplementation trials

Han Yao Huang, Maureen G. Maguire, Edgar R. Miller, Lawrence J. Appel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The impact of pill organizers on pill taking was determined in the Trial of Antioxidant Vitamins C and E (TRACE) Study, a factorial trial of vitamin C and vitamin E supplementation in 184 individuals. Participants were recruited in 1996-1997 and randomized to one of two groups (pill organizer or no organizer) and to one of four supplement groups for 2 months. The pill count (observed/expected X 100%) distribution was similar in the organizer and no organizer group for both vitamins. Mean differences in changes in serum vitamin levels between active and placebo groups did not differ by pill organizer use. The impact of pill organizers and blister packs was compared in another trial, the Vitamins, Teachers, and Longevity (VITAL) Study, in 297 individuals randomized in 1993-1994 to receive study pills either in blister packs or in pill organizers and to take one of two supplements. Among those with lower adherence, the pill count distribution in the blister-pack group exceeded that in the organizer group. Mean differences in serum vitamin E levels between active and placebo groups did not differ by types of pill packaging. In summary, use of blister packs, but not pill organizers, improved adherence as measured by pill counts among those with lower adherence. Neither pill delivery system improved adherence as measured by serum vitamin levels.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)780-787
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican journal of epidemiology
Volume152
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 15 2000

Keywords

  • Controlled clinical trials
  • Drug delivery systems
  • Drug packaging
  • Patient compliance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology

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