Medication compliance during a smoking cessation clinical trial: A brief intervention using MEMS feedback

Joy M. Schmitz, Shelly L. Sayre, Angela L. Stotts, Jennifer Rothfleisch, Marc E. Mooney

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

46 Scopus citations


This study examined the role of a Medication Event Monitoring System (MEMS) to assess pill-taking behavior and enhance compliance within a randomized trial of bupropion-SR for smoking cessation. Female participants (N = 97) received MEMS bottles containing bupropion-SR 150 mg or placebo, to be taken twice daily. A randomly selected "feedback" group of participants was told about the recording device in the bottle cap and received weekly graphic feedback showing their pill-taking behavior with specific instructions for improving compliance. A "no-feedback" group was not informed about the MEMS bottles, and did not receive further instruction or feedback beyond the standard dosing instructions. Compliance outcomes were the total doses taken and number of doses taken within the prescribed time interval. Results indicated significantly higher compliance over time for the feedback group. Participation in the feedback group predicted higher compliance beyond demographic, smoking, and health belief variables, suggesting significant benefit in providing brief feedback and instruction throughout the medication regimen.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)139-147
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Behavioral Medicine
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2005
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported by the NIDA grant DA-08888 and the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Texas – Houston. The grant was awarded to Joy M. Schmitz, PhD at the University of Texas – Houston. This work was presented at the Seventh Annual Meeting of the Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco, Seattle, WA, March 2001. The authors thank GlaxoSmithKline for providing drug and placebo. We thank Lawanda Howard, Susan Graham, Howard Rhoades, and Ann Garcia for their assistance with this work.


  • Bupropion-SR
  • Clinical trial
  • Medication compliance
  • Medication event monitoring systems
  • Smoking cessation


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