BACKGROUND: Hypertension (high blood pressure) is a common long-term health condition. Patient involvement in treating and monitoring hypertension is essential. Control of hypertension improves population cardiovascular outcomes. However, for an individual, potential benefits and harms of treatment are finely balanced. Shared decision making has the potential to align decisions with the preferences and values of patients.
OBJECTIVE: Determine the effectiveness of interventions to support shared decision making in hypertension.
SEARCH STRATEGY: Searches in MEDLINE, EMBASE, CINAHL, Web of Science and PsycINFO up to 30 September 2017.
ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA: Controlled studies evaluating the effects of shared decision-making interventions for adults with hypertension compared with any comparator in any setting and reporting any outcome measures.
RESULTS: Six studies (five randomized controlled trials) in European primary care were included. Main intervention components were as follows: training for health-care professionals, decision aids, patient coaching and a patient leaflet. Four studies, none at low risk of bias, reported a measure of shared decision making; the intervention increased shared decision making in one study. Four studies reported blood pressure between 6 months and 3 years after the intervention; there was no difference in blood pressure between intervention and control groups in any study. Lack of comparability between studies prevented meta-analysis.
CONCLUSIONS: Despite widespread calls for shared decision making to be embedded in health care, there is little evidence to inform shared decision making for hypertension, one of the most common conditions managed in primary care.