Effect of directly observed antiretroviral therapy compared to self-administered antiretroviral therapy on adherence and virological outcomes among HIV-infected prisoners: a randomized controlled pilot study

AIDS Behav. 2015 Jan;19(1):128-36. doi: 10.1007/s10461-014-0850-8.

Abstract

The effect of directly observed therapy (DOT) versus self-administered therapy (SAT) on antiretroviral (ART) adherence and virological outcomes in prison has never been assessed in a randomized, controlled trial. Prisoners were randomized to receive ART by DOT or SAT. The primary outcome was medication adherence [percent of ART doses measured by the medication event monitoring system (MEMS) and pill counts] at the end of 24 weeks. The changes in the plasma viral loads from baseline and proportion of participants virological suppressed (<400 copies/mL) at the end of 24 weeks were assessed. Sixty-six percent (90/136) of eligible prisoners declined participation. Participants in the DOT arm (n = 20) had higher viral loads than participants in the SAT (n = 23) arm (p = 0.23). Participants, with complete data at 24 weeks, were analyzed as randomized. There were no significant differences in median ART adherence between the DOT (n = 16, 99% MEMS [IQR 93.9, 100], 97.1 % pill count [IQR 95.1, 99.3]) and SAT (n = 21, 98.3 % MEMS [IQR 96.0, 100], 98.5 % pill count [95.8, 100]) arms (p = 0.82 MEMS, p = 0.40 Pill Count) at 24 weeks. Participants in the DOT arm had a greater reduction in viral load of approximately -1 log 10 copies/mL [IQR -1.75, -0.05] compared to -0.05 [IQR -0.45, 0.51] in the SAT arm (p value = 0.02) at 24 weeks. The proportion of participants achieving virological suppression in the DOT vs SAT arms was not statistically different at 24 weeks (53 % vs 32 %, p = 0.21). These findings suggest that DOT ART programs in prison settings may not offer any additional benefit on adherence than SAT programs.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Multicenter Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anti-HIV Agents / administration & dosage*
  • Antiretroviral Therapy, Highly Active
  • CD4 Lymphocyte Count
  • Directly Observed Therapy*
  • Female
  • HIV Infections / drug therapy*
  • HIV Infections / epidemiology
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Medication Adherence / statistics & numerical data*
  • North Carolina / epidemiology
  • Pilot Projects
  • Prisoners*
  • Self Administration*
  • Viral Load

Substances

  • Anti-HIV Agents