Change to Opioid study EMA sampling


We received the following request from Dr. Finan, with approval from Dr. Kumar and Sameer:

Our team here has been discussing the opioid reports we’ve been getting from the EMA and whether we have the optimal sampling technique down.

My primary concern with our current approach is that assessing opioid use both randomly and through event contingent entries can create confusion and may not yield the data we want. For example, some participants are only reporting about opioid use through the random prompts and not using the pain medication button. Another participant did the opposite. I think it would be more straight forward to go with just the Pain Medication button and double-down on training the participant to use it.

I suggest the following:
1) Remove opioid use questions from the random prompts.
2) Retain the event contingent “Pain Medication” button as is, and we will focus on that critically in our participant training
3) Add an opioid use item at the fixed end-of-day prompt, in which we ask the participant to tell us how many pills the took over the course of the entire day. (this would give us a check on their use of the Pain Medication button, so Shriya can call them to reinforce the training if she sees a big discrepancy)

Can you weigh in on whether you agree with this type of change? If so, would it be possible to make these changes prior to our next participant, who is coming in Wednesday, May 8th?


Timothy Hnat
June 26, 2019, 7:13 PM

This has already been completed.

Shahin Samiei
May 14, 2019, 6:14 PM

Thank you, . I have tested the EMAs via the provided instructions and they look to be showing properly. I am currently testing with mCerebrum running and things appear okay so far. I’ll be glad to let Patrick’s team know as well.

Thanks again,


Monowar Hossain
May 14, 2019, 2:27 PM

Hi and ,

I release a new version of the app to incorporate these changes. If you have time, please test it.

Update App:

  1. Check the update. It will download the configuration file and ask you to install a new version of “opioid lab ui” app (version 2.0.0-RC5)

  2. Configure the medication list again (if already configured) from mCerebrum->AppSetting → opioid lab ui → settings. It will recreate the EMA files based on the selected medications.

Test App:

  1. You can open the Survey app directly from app list of the phone. Please check whether the EMA questionnaires are showing properly

  2. Run mCerebrum app and check EMA questionnaires.





Shahin Samiei
May 8, 2019, 10:23 PM


Thanks for your help with this. Here is the information and language we received from the study team:

1. No questions regarding opioid use in the morning diary or random EMAs

2. Keep questions in self-report as-is

3. Use the below language for the end-of-day EMA:

How many pills of _______ did you take today, from the time you woke up until now?


***Answer should be scroll bar***

They are hoping to have this update in place by the next participant enrollment on May 15th.

Please let me know if you have any questions, and thanks again for all of your help with this!



Monowar Hossain


Shahin Samiei