Literature Review

Can Mobile Apps Improve Medication Adherence in Pregnant Patients With Epilepsy?

A recent study suggests that possibility, but the evidence is far from conclusive.


To determine how well pregnant women with epilepsy adhere to their medication regimen, Ernst et al studied their intake of antiepileptic medication by providing them with an iPod Touch loaded with a mobile app specifically designed to track such data. Eighty-six women with epilepsy monitored their seizures and medication use. The study found that 75% of the women had tracked their medication usage for more than 80% of the days they were enrolled in the experiment. Among this subgroup, adherence to the anti-epilepsy drug regimen was 97.7%; 44% said they had missed taking their medication for at least one day. The investigators speculate that the high adherence rate may have been the result of using the mobile app itself.

Ernst L. Harden CL, Pennell PB, et al. Medication adherence in women with epilepsy who are planning pregnancy. Epilepsia. 2016; 57(12):2039-2044.

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