Heterogeneity of Treatment Effects Among Patients With Type 2 Diabetes and Elevated Body Mass Index in a Study Comparing Group Medical Visits Focused on Weight Management and Medication Intensification.

Journal Article (Journal Article)


Illuminating heterogeneity of treatment effect (HTE) within trials is important for identifying target populations for implementation.


The aim of this study was to examine HTE in a trial of group medical visits (GMVs) for patients with type 2 diabetes and elevated body mass index.

Research design and measures

Participants (n=263) were randomized to GMV-based medication management plus low carbohydrate diet-focused weight management (WM/GMV; n=127) or GMV-based medication management alone (GMV; n=136) for diabetes control. We used QUalitative INteraction Trees, a tree-based clustering method, to identify subgroups with greater improvement in hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) and weight from either WM/GMV or GMV. Subgroup predictors included 32 baseline demographic, clinical, and psychosocial factors. Internal validation was conducted to estimate bias in the range of mean outcome differences between arms.


QUalitative INteraction Trees analyses indicated that for patients who had not previously attempted weight loss, WM/GMV resulted in better glycemic control than GMV (mean difference in HbA1c improvement=1.48%). For patients who had previously attempted weight loss and had lower cholesterol and blood urea nitrogen, GMV was better than WM/GMV (mean difference in HbA1c improvement=1.51%). No treatment-subgroup effects were identified for weight. Internal validation resulted in moderate corrections in mean HbA1c differences between arms; however, differences remained in the clinically significant range.


This work represents a novel step toward targeting care approaches for patients to maximize benefit based on individual patient characteristics.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Kobe, EA; Crowley, MJ; Jeffreys, AS; Yancy, WS; Zervakis, J; Edelman, D; Voils, CI; Maciejewski, ML; Coffman, CJ

Published Date

  • November 2021

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 59 / 11

Start / End Page

  • 1031 - 1038

PubMed ID

  • 34510104

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC8516740

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1537-1948

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0025-7079

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1097/mlr.0000000000001642


  • eng