Effect of a Home-Based Exercise Intervention of Wearable Technology and Telephone Coaching on Walking Performance in Peripheral Artery Disease

Question  Among patients with lower-extremity peripheral artery disease (PAD), does a home-based exercise intervention that consists of a wearable activity monitor and telephone coaching improve walking performance?

Findings  In this randomized clinical trial of 200 participants with PAD, a wearable activity monitor combined with telephone coaching did not significantly improve 6-minute walk distance at 9 months (5.5 m in the intervention group vs 14.4 m in the usual care group).

Meaning  These results do not support home-based exercise interventions of wearable devices combined with telephone coaching to improve walking performance in patients with PAD.

Reference: JAMA. 2018;319(16):1665-1676.

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Real-time continuous glucose monitoring in adults with type 1 diabetes and impaired hypoglycaemia awareness or severe hypoglycaemia treated with multiple daily insulin injections (HypoDE)

Background

The effectiveness of real-time continuous glucose monitoring (rtCGM) in avoidance of hypoglycaemia among high-risk individuals with type 1 diabetes treated with multiple daily insulin injections (MDI) is unknown. We aimed to ascertain whether the incidence and severity of hypoglycaemia can be reduced through use of rtCGM in these individuals.

Methods

The HypoDE study was a 6-month, multicentre, open-label, parallel, randomised controlled trial done at 12 diabetes practices in Germany. Eligible participants had type 1 diabetes and a history of impaired hypoglycaemia awareness or severe hypoglycaemia during the previous year. All participants wore a masked rtCGM system for 28 days and were then randomly assigned to 26 weeks of unmasked rtCGM (Dexcom G5 Mobile system) or to the control group (continuing with self-monitoring of blood glucose). Block randomisation with 1:1 allocation was done centrally, with the study site as the stratifying variable. Masking of participants and study sites was not possible. Control participants wore a masked rtCGM system during the follow-up phase (weeks 22–26). The primary outcome was the baseline-adjusted number of hypoglycaemic events (defined as glucose ≤3·0 mmol/L for ≥20 min) during the follow-up phase. The full dataset analysis comprised participants who wore the rtCGM system during the baseline and follow-up phases. The intention-to-treat analysis comprised all randomised participants. This trial is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, number NCT02671968.

Findings

Between March 4, 2016, and Jan 12, 2017, 149 participants were randomly assigned (n=74 to the control group; n=75 to the rtCGM group) and 141 completed the follow-up phase (n=66 in the control group, n=75 in the rtCGM group). The mean number of hypoglycaemic events per 28 days among participants in the rtCGM group was reduced from 10·8 (SD 10·0) to 3·5 (4·7); reductions among control participants were negligible (from 14·4 [12·4] to 13·7 [11·6]). Incidence of hypoglycaemic events decreased by 72% for participants in the rtCGM group (incidence rate ratio 0·28 [95% CI 0·20–0·39], p<0·0001). 18 serious adverse events were reported: seven in the control group, ten in the rtCGM group, and one before randomisation. No event was considered to be related to the investigational device.

Interpretation

Usage of rtCGM reduced the number of hypoglycaemic events in individuals with type 1 diabetes treated by MDI and with impaired hypoglycaemia awareness or severe hypoglycaemia.

Quadrupling Inhaled Glucocorticoid Dose to Abort Asthma Exacerbations

BACKGROUND

Asthma exacerbations are frightening for patients and are occasionally fatal. We tested the concept that a plan for patients to manage their asthma (self-management plan), which included a temporary quadrupling of the dose of inhaled glucocorticoids when asthma control started to deteriorate, would reduce the incidence of severe asthma exacerbations among adults and adolescents with asthma.

METHODS

We conducted a pragmatic, unblinded, randomized trial involving adults and adolescents with asthma who were receiving inhaled glucocorticoids, with or without add-on therapy, and who had had at least one exacerbation in the previous 12 months. We compared a self-management plan that included an increase in the dose of inhaled glucocorticoids by a factor of 4 (quadrupling group) with the same plan without such an increase (non-quadrupling group), over a period of 12 months. The primary outcome was the time to a first severe asthma exacerbation, defined as treatment with systemic glucocorticoids or an unscheduled health care consultation for asthma.

RESULTS

A total of 1922 participants underwent randomization, of whom 1871 were included in the primary analysis. The number of participants who had a severe asthma exacerbation in the year after randomization was 420 (45%) in the quadrupling group as compared with 484 (52%) in the non-quadrupling group, with an adjusted hazard ratio for the time to a first severe exacerbation of 0.81 (95% confidence interval, 0.71 to 0.92; P=0.002). The rate of adverse effects, which were related primarily to local effects of inhaled glucocorticoids, was higher in the quadrupling group than in the non-quadrupling group.

CONCLUSIONS

In this trial involving adults and adolescents with asthma, a personalized self-management plan that included a temporary quadrupling of the dose of inhaled glucocorticoids when asthma control started to deteriorate resulted in fewer severe asthma exacerbations than a plan in which the dose was not increased. (Funded by the Health Technology Assessment Programme of the National Institute for Health Research; Current Controlled Trials number, ISRCTN15441965.)

Quintupling Inhaled Glucocorticoids to Prevent Childhood Asthma Exacerbations

BACKGROUND

Asthma exacerbations occur frequently despite the regular use of asthma-controller therapies, such as inhaled glucocorticoids. Clinicians commonly increase the doses of inhaled glucocorticoids at early signs of loss of asthma control. However, data on the safety and efficacy of this strategy in children are limited.

METHODS

We studied 254 children, 5 to 11 years of age, who had mild-to-moderate persistent asthma and had had at least one asthma exacerbation treated with systemic glucocorticoids in the previous year. Children were treated for 48 weeks with maintenance low-dose inhaled glucocorticoids (fluticasone propionate at a dose of 44 μg per inhalation, two inhalations twice daily) and were randomly assigned to either continue the same dose (low-dose group) or use a quintupled dose (high-dose group; fluticasone at a dose of 220 μg per inhalation, two inhalations twice daily) for 7 days at the early signs of loss of asthma control (“yellow zone”). Treatment was provided in a double-blind fashion. The primary outcome was the rate of severe asthma exacerbations treated with systemic glucocorticoids.

RESULTS

The rate of severe asthma exacerbations treated with systemic glucocorticoids did not differ significantly between groups (0.48 exacerbations per year in the high-dose group and 0.37 exacerbations per year in the low-dose group; relative rate, 1.3; 95% confidence interval, 0.8 to 2.1; P=0.30). The time to the first exacerbation, the rate of treatment failure, symptom scores, and albuterol use during yellow-zone episodes did not differ significantly between groups. The total glucocorticoid exposure was 16% higher in the high-dose group than in the low-dose group. The difference in linear growth between the high-dose group and the low-dose group was −0.23 cm per year (P=0.06).

CONCLUSIONS

In children with mild-to-moderate persistent asthma treated with daily inhaled glucocorticoids, quintupling the dose at the early signs of loss of asthma control did not reduce the rate of severe asthma exacerbations or improve other asthma outcomes and may be associated with diminished linear growth. (Funded by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute; STICS ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT02066129.)

Reference: N Engl J Med 2018; 378:891-901

Cardiovascular Safety of Febuxostat or Allopurinol in Patients with Gout

BACKGROUND

Cardiovascular risk is increased in patients with gout. We compared cardiovascular outcomes associated with febuxostat, a nonpurine xanthine oxidase inhibitor, with those associated with allopurinol, a purine base analogue xanthine oxidase inhibitor, in patients with gout and cardiovascular disease.

METHODS

We conducted a multicenter, double-blind, noninferiority trial involving patients with gout and cardiovascular disease; patients were randomly assigned to receive febuxostat or allopurinol and were stratified according to kidney function. The trial had a prespecified noninferiority margin of 1.3 for the hazard ratio for the primary end point (a composite of cardiovascular death, nonfatal myocardial infarction, nonfatal stroke, or unstable angina with urgent revascularization).

RESULTS

In total, 6190 patients underwent randomization, received febuxostat or allopurinol, and were followed for a median of 32 months (maximum, 85 months). The trial regimen was discontinued in 56.6% of patients, and 45.0% discontinued follow-up. In the modified intention-to-treat analysis, a primary end-point event occurred in 335 patients (10.8%) in the febuxostat group and in 321 patients (10.4%) in the allopurinol group (hazard ratio, 1.03; upper limit of the one-sided 98.5% confidence interval [CI], 1.23; P=0.002 for noninferiority). All-cause and cardiovascular mortality were higher in the febuxostat group than in the allopurinol group (hazard ratio for death from any cause, 1.22 [95% CI, 1.01 to 1.47]; hazard ratio for cardiovascular death, 1.34 [95% CI, 1.03 to 1.73]). The results with regard to the primary end point and all-cause and cardiovascular mortality in the analysis of events that occurred while patients were being treated were similar to the results in the modified intention-to-treat analysis.

CONCLUSIONS

In patients with gout and major cardiovascular coexisting conditions, febuxostat was noninferior to allopurinol with respect to rates of adverse cardiovascular events. All-cause mortality and cardiovascular mortality were higher with febuxostat than with allopurinol. (Funded by Takeda Development Center Americas; CARES ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT01101035.)

Reference: N Engl J Med 2018; 378:1200-1210

Effect of a Low-Intensity PSA-Based Screening Intervention on Prostate Cancer Mortality

Question  What is the effect of an invitation to a single prostate-specific antigen (PSA) screening on prostate cancer detection and median 10-year prostate cancer mortality?

Findings  In this randomized clinical trial comparing men aged 50 to 69 years undergoing a single PSA screening (n = 189 386) vs controls not undergoing a PSA screening (n = 219 439), the proportion of men diagnosed with prostate cancer was higher in the intervention group (4.3%) than in the control group (3.6%); however, there was no significant difference in prostate cancer mortality (0.30 per 1000 person-years for the intervention group vs 0.31 for the control group) after a median follow-up of 10 years.

Meaning  The single PSA screening intervention detected more prostate cancer cases but had no significant effect on prostate cancer mortality after a median follow-up of 10 years.

Reference: JAMA. 2018;319(9):883-895.

Effect of Opioid vs Nonopioid Medications on Pain-Related Function in Patients With Chronic Back Pain or Hip or Knee Osteoarthritis Pain

Question  For patients with moderate to severe chronic back pain or hip or knee osteoarthritis pain despite analgesic use, does opioid medication compared with nonopioid medication result in better pain-related function?

Findings  In this randomized clinical trial that included 240 patients, the use of opioid vs nonopioid medication therapy did not result in significantly better pain-related function over 12 months (3.4 vs 3.3 points on an 11-point scale at 12 months, respectively).

Meaning  This study does not support initiation of opioid therapy for moderate to severe chronic back pain or hip or knee osteoarthritis pain.

Reference: JAMA. 2018;319(9):872-882.