Returning of antiretroviral medication dispensed over a period of 8 months suggests non-adherence despite full adherence according to real time medication monitoring

Kennedy Michael Ngowi, Lydia Masika, Furaha Lyamuya, Eva Muro, Blandina T. Mmbaga, Mirjam A. G. Sprangers, Pythia T. Nieuwkerk, Rob E. Aarnoutse, Peter Reiss, I. Marion Sumari-de Boer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Real-time medication monitoring (RTMM) may potentially enhance adherence to antiretroviral treatment (ART). We describe a participant in an ongoing trial who, shortly after completing trial participation, died of cryptococcal meningitis despite high levels of adherence according to self-report, pill-counts and RTMM (> 99%). However, she evidenced consistently high HIV viral load throughout the 48-week study follow-up. Subsequently, her relatives unsolicitedly returned eight months' dispensed ART medication that she was supposed to have taken. This brief report illustrates the challenges of adherence measurements including RTMM, and reinforces the need to combine adherence assessments with viral load monitoring in HIV care.
Original languageEnglish
Article number57
Pages (from-to)57
Number of pages1
JournalAIDS Research and Therapy
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 10 Sep 2020


  • ART
  • Adherence
  • Case report
  • Realtime medication monitoring
  • mHealth

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