The effects of metoprolol (Betaloc tablets) in a group of 193 hypertensives were compared with the effects of a slow-release formulation (Betaloc Durules) in a further group of 196 patients. Patients were selected at random for treatment. There were no differences between the groups in terms of age, weight, sex, blood pressure, concurrent illness or concomitant therapy. Blood pressure control and apparent adverse effects were similar for both groups; the overall withdrawal rate from each group was similar. Compliance, assessed by tablet counts, was significantly improved in the group receiving once-daily therapy. Simplification of the dosage regimen to once-daily therapy appears to improve the patient's willingness to comply with the physician's instructions.