Device guided breathing for blood pressure control

KM2The Resperate device is currently being marketed as a non-pharmacological treatment to lower blood pressure on the basis of a number of published clinical trials. This was the first systematic review and meta-analysis to evaluate its effectiveness in lowering blood pressure in hypertensive patients. We included eight trials of the Resperate device consisting of 494 adult patients. Although we found a significant lowering of both systolic bp (-3.67mmHg [95% confidence interval (CI) – 5.99 to -1.39; P=0.002]) and diastolic bp (-2.51mmHg [95% CI= -4.15 to -0.87; P=0.003]) the effect was fairly small. In addition the trials were generally of short duration with little evidence for any long term benefit. We also had concerns over the quality of some of the published trials. We concluded that although Resperate may show some effect in lowering blood pressure, longer, independent, high-quality trials are needed before this device can be validated.

Impact
Our systematic review has influenced policy from the British Hypertension Society who issued a statement following our review. http://www.bhsoc.org/pdfs/Statement%20on%20RESPeRATE%20April%2012.pdf The BHS came to the following conclusion “In the opinion of the BHS, such small effects over very short durations of time do not provide sufficient evidence for this equipment to be recommended.”  The review has also been cited by NICE in the Hypertension: Evidence Update March 2013 https://www.evidence.nhs.uk/evidence-update-32

Publications

Associated media
Call for a Re-evaluation of the American Heart Association’s Standpoint Concerning Device-Guided Slow Breathing Using the RESPeRATE Device
Reuters – Music device doesn’t drop diabetics’ blood pressure