X Marks the Spot: Mapping Similarity Between Clinical Trial Cohorts and US Counties

AMIA Annu Symp Proc. 2018 Apr 16;2017:1110-1119. eCollection 2017.


When patients and doctors collaborate to make healthcare decisions, they rely on clinical trial results to guide discussions. Trials are designed to recruit diverse participants. The question remains - how well do trial results apply to me or to people who live in our area? This study compared one complete clinical trial dataset (SPRINT) and one published study (ACCORD) to the Community Health Status Indicators dataset to assess the similarity of the trial populations to US county populations. Counties up to 495 miles to the closest SPRINT trial site and up to 712 miles to the closest ACCORD trial site had populations that were significantly more similar to the study cohort than counties farther away. The investigators detail a generalizable method for both assessing recruitment gaps in large multicenter trials and creating maps for clinicians to provide intuition on trial applicability in their area.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Black or African American
  • Datasets as Topic*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2
  • Health Status Indicators
  • Hispanic or Latino
  • Humans
  • Hypertension
  • Multicenter Studies as Topic*
  • Patient Selection
  • Pragmatic Clinical Trials as Topic
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic*
  • Research Design
  • United States