JMIR Publications

JMIR Diabetes

Emerging Technologies, Medical Devices, Apps, Sensors, and Informatics to Help People with Diabetes.

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Journal Description

JMIR Diabetes (JD) is a new sister journal of JMIR (the leading open-access journal in health informatics (Impact Factor 2016: 5.175), focusing on technologies, medical devices, apps, engineering, informatics and patient education for diabetes prevention, self-management, care, and cure, to help people with diabetes. As open access journal we are read by clinicians and patients alike and have (as all JMIR journals) a focus on readable and applied science reporting the design and evaluation of health innovations and emerging technologies, as well as on diabetes epidemiology. We publish original research, viewpoints, and reviews (both literature reviews and medical device/technology/app reviews) covering for example wearable devices and trackers, mobile apps, glucose monitoring (including emerging technologies such as Google contact lens), medical devices for insulin and metabolic peptide delivery, closed loop systems and artificial pancreas, telemedicine, web-based diabetes education and elearning, innovations for patient self-management and "quantified self", diabetes-specific EHR improvements, clinical or consumer-focused software, diabetes epidemiology and surveillance, crowdsourcing and quantified self-based research data, new sensors and actuators to be applied to diabetes.

 

Recent Articles:

  • Woman using the HCAI while eating a meal. Source: The Authors / Placeit.net; Copyright: The Authors; URL: http://diabetes.jmir.org/2017/2/e28/; License: Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY).

    A Fully Automated Conversational Artificial Intelligence for Weight Loss: Longitudinal Observational Study Among Overweight and Obese Adults

    Abstract:

    Background: Type 2 diabetes is the most expensive chronic disease in the United States. Two-thirds of US adults have prediabetes or are overweight and at risk for type 2 diabetes. Intensive in-person behavioral counseling can help patients lose weight and make healthy behavior changes to improve their health outcomes. However, with the shortage of health care providers and associated costs, such programs do not adequately service all patients who could benefit. The health care system needs effective and cost-effective interventions that can lead to positive health outcomes as scale. This study investigated the ability of conversational artificial intelligence (AI), in the form of a standalone, fully automated text-based mobile coaching service, to promote weight loss and other health behaviors related to diabetes prevention. This study also measured user acceptability of AI coaches as alternatives to live health care professionals. Objective: The objective of this study was to evaluate weight loss, changes in meal quality, and app acceptability among users of the Lark Weight Loss Health Coach AI (HCAI), with the overarching goal of increasing access to compassionate health care via mobile health. Lessons learned in this study can be applied when planning future clinical trials to evaluate HCAI and when designing AI to promote weight loss, healthy behavior change, and prevention and self-management of chronic diseases. Methods: This was a longitudinal observational study among overweight and obese (body mass index ≥25) participants who used HCAI, which encourages weight loss and healthy diet choices through elements of cognitive behavioral therapy. Weight loss, meal quality, physical activity, and sleep data were collected through user input and, for sleep and physical activity, partly through automatic detection by the user’s mobile phone. User engagement was assessed by duration and amount of app use. A 4-question in-app user trust survey assessed app usability and acceptability. Results: Data were analyzed for participants (N=70) who met engagement standards set forth by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention criteria for Diabetes Prevention Program, a clinically proven weight loss program focused on preventing diabetes. Weight loss (standard error of the mean) was 2.38% (0.69%) of baseline weight. The average duration of app use was 15 (SD 1.0) weeks, and users averaged 103 sessions each. Predictors of weight loss included duration of AI use, number of counseling sessions, and number of meals logged. Percentage of healthy meals increased by 31%. The in-app user trust survey had a 100% response rate and positive results, with a satisfaction score of 87 out of 100 and net promoter score of 47. Conclusions: This study showed that use of an AI health coach is associated with weight loss comparable to in-person lifestyle interventions. It can also encourage behavior changes and have high user acceptability. Research into AI and its application in telemedicine should be pursued, with clinical trials investigating effects on weight, health behaviors, and user engagement and acceptability.

  • Source: Pixabay; Copyright: alphalight1; URL: https://pixabay.com/en/child-girl-young-caucasian-1073638/; License: Public Domain (CC0).

    A Novel Approach to Identifying Barriers and Facilitators in Raising a Child With Type 1 Diabetes: Qualitative Analysis of Caregiver Blogs

    Abstract:

    Background: With rising incidence of type 1 diabetes (T1D) diagnoses among children and the high levels of distress experienced by the caregivers of these children, caregiver support is becoming increasingly important. Historically, relatively few support resources have existed. Increasing use of the Internet, and blogs in particular, has seen a growth of peer support between caregivers of children with T1D. However, little is known about the type and quality of information shared on T1D caregiver blogs. At the same time, the information on such blogs offers a new window into what challenges and successes caregivers experience in helping to manage their children’s T1D. Objective: The purpose of this study was to (1) analyze blogs of caregivers to children with T1D to better understand the challenges and successes they face in raising a child with T1D, and (2) assess the blogs for the presence of unsafe or inaccurate clinical information or advice. Methods: An inductive thematic qualitative study was conducted of three blogs authored by caregivers of children living with T1D, which included 140 unique blog posts and 663 associated comments. Two physician investigators evaluated the blogs for presence of clinical or medical misinformation. Results: Five major themes emerged: (1) the impact of the child’s diagnosis, (2) the burden of intense self-management experienced in caring for a child with T1D, (3) caregivers’ use of technology to ease their fear of hypoglycemia and impacts that device alarms associated with this technology have on caregiver burden, (4) caregivers’ perceptions of frequently missed or delayed diagnosis of T1D and the frustration this causes, and (5) the resilience that caregivers develop despite the burdens they experience. Misinformation was exceedingly rare and benign when it did occur. Conclusions: Blog analysis represents a novel approach to understand the T1D caregiver’s experience. This qualitative study found many challenges that caregivers face in raising a child with T1D. Despite the many barriers caregivers face in managing their children’s T1D, they find support through advocacy efforts and peer-to-peer blogging. Blogs provide a unique avenue for support, with only rare and benign findings of medical misinformation, and may be a resource that diabetes care providers can consider offering to families for support.

  • Source: The Authors / Placeit.net; Copyright: The Authors; URL: http://diabetes.jmir.org/2017/2/e26; License: Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY).

    A Website to Promote Physical Activity in People With Type 2 Diabetes Living in Remote or Rural Locations: Feasibility Pilot Randomized Controlled Trial

    Abstract:

    Background: Research supports the use of Web-based interventions to promote physical activity in diabetes management. However, previous interventions have found poor levels of engagement or have not included health professionals and people with diabetes in the design of the tool. Objective: To develop and explore the feasibility and indicative effect of a Web-based physical activity promotion intervention in people diagnosed with type 2 diabetes living in remote or rural locations. Methods: A qualitative approach using focus groups that included patients with diabetes and health professionals were run to identify key concepts, ideas, and features, which resulted in the design of a physical activity website. This site was tested using a quantitative approach with a qualitative 6-month pilot study that adopted a three-armed approach. Participants were randomized into three groups: a control group who received written diabetes-specific physical activity advice; an information Web group, a Web-based group who received the information online; and an intervention Web group, an interactive Web-based group who received online information plus interactive features, such as an activity log, personalized advice, and goal setting. Results: A website was designed based on patient and health professional ideas for effective physical activity promotion. This website was tested with 31 participants, 61% (19/31) male, who were randomized into the groups. Website log-ins decreased over time: 4.5 times in month 1, falling to 3 times in month 6. Both the information Web group—mean 134.6 (SD 123.9) to mean 154.9 (SD 144.2) min—and the control group—mean 118.9 (SD 103.8) to mean 126.1 (SD 93.4) min, d=0.07—increased time spent in moderate-to-vigorous physical activity, but this decreased in the intervention Web group—mean 131.9 (SD 126.2) to mean 116.8 (SD 107.4) min. Conclusions: Access to online diabetes-specific physical information was effective in promoting physical activity in people with type 2 diabetes; access to interactive features was not associated with increases in activity. Trial Registration: International Standard Randomised Controlled Trial Number (ISRCTN): 96266587; http://www.isrctn.com/ISRCTN96266587 (Archived by WebCite at http://www.webcitation.org/6tzX6YesZ)

  • Source: iStock by Getty Images; Copyright: Pilin_Petunyia; URL: http://www.istockphoto.com/photo/pregnant-woman-calling-by-mobile-phone-gm470173322-62008558?irgwc=1&esource=AFF_IS_IR_SP_FreeDigitalPhotos_278806&asid=FreeDigitalPhotos&cid=IS; License: Licensed by the authors.

    Functionality, Implementation, Impact, and the Role of Health Literacy in Mobile Phone Apps for Gestational Diabetes: Scoping Review

    Abstract:

    Background: The increasing ownership of mobile phones and advances in hardware and software position these devices as cost-effective personalized tools for health promotion and management among women with gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM). Numerous mobile phone apps are available online; however, to our knowledge, no review has documented how these apps are developed and evaluated in relation to GDM. Objective: The objective of our review was to answer the following 2 research questions: (1) What is known from the existing literature about the availability, functionality, and effectiveness of mobile phone apps on GDM prevention and management? (2) What is the role of health literacy in these apps? Methods: We searched 7 relevant electronic databases for original research documents using terms related to mobile phone apps, GDM, and health literacy. We thematically categorized selected articles using a framework adapted from Arksey and O’Malley. Results: We included 12 articles related to 7 apps or systems in the final analysis. We classified articles around 2 themes: (1) description of the development, feasibility, or usability of the apps or systems, and (2) trial protocols. The degree of personalization varied among the apps for GDM, and decision support systems can be used to generate time-efficient personalized feedback for both patients and health care providers. Health literacy was considered during the development or measured as an outcome by some apps. Conclusions: There is a limited body of research on mobile phone apps in relation to GDM prevention and management. Mobile phone apps can provide time- and cost-efficient personalized interventions for GDM. Several randomized controlled trials have been launched recently to evaluate the effectiveness of the apps. Consideration of health literacy should be improved when developing features of the apps.

  • Source: Image created by the Authors; Copyright: The Authors; URL: http://diabetes.jmir.org/2017/2/e24/; License: Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY).

    Examining the Impact of a Novel Blood Glucose Monitor With Color Range Indicator on Decision-Making in Patients With Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes and its...

    Abstract:

    Background: Many patients struggle to interpret and respond appropriately to the numerical blood glucose results displayed on their meter, with many regularly taking no action or self-care adjustment for out-of-range results. We recently reported that a glucose meter that provides automatic onscreen information using a color range indicator (ColorSure Technology) improved the ability of patients to categorize their blood glucose results. Objective: The objective of this study was to examine how ColorSure Technology (or color) affected patient decision making on blood glucose results and how patient numeracy levels influenced such decisions. Methods: We invited 103 subjects (56 with type 2 diabetes and 47 with type 1 diabetes) to a face-to-face in-clinic visit in a diabetes care center and showed them glucose results with or without color via interactive computer or paper logbook exercises. Before participating in these exercises, subjects completed surveys on numeracy and their understanding of blood glucose information. Results: Subjects preferentially acted on high glucose results shown with color (55%, 57/103) compared to results without color (45%, 46/103; P=.001). When shown identical pairs of results, subjects preferentially acted on results shown with color (62%, 64/103) compared to results without color (16%, 16/103) (P<.001). Subjects more accurately identified days of the week in which results were low, in range, or high when reviewing logbooks with color (83%, 85/103) than without color (68%, 70/103; P=.012). Subjects with lower numeracy were more likely to consider taking action for high glucose results shown with color (59%, 18/31) than without color (41%, 13/31) and preferentially would take action on results shown with color (71%, 22/31) compared to results without color (16%, 5/31). Conclusions: Insulin- and noninsulin-using subjects were each more inclined to act when glucose results were shown with color, and associating glucose results with color was viewed as particularly beneficial by subjects with lower numeracy.

  • Source: Shutterstock; Copyright: Monkey Business Images; URL: https://www.shutterstock.com/image-photo/family-looking-laptop-together-184853882?src=JjyN5TYsnqPx_WLHtgTpMw-1-16; License: Licensed by JMIR.

    Mutual Involvement in Families With Type 2 Diabetes Through Web-Based Health Care Solutions: Quantitative Survey Study of Family Preferences, Challenges, and...

    Abstract:

    Background: Type 2 diabetes (T2D) is a prevalent chronic disease that affects not just patients but entire families. Both the patient and the rest of the family may benefit from gaining knowledge about the disease and from supportive interfamilial interaction. The Internet is becoming a widely-used resource for health information, so a Web-based solution could potentially promote awareness and knowledge on how to manage T2D as a family, while also providing support for the family. Objective: We aim to assess the usage of online diabetes information by patients with T2D and their relatives, and explore the families’ needs and preferences regarding online information on diabetes. Methods: A quantitative self-reported questionnaire survey was performed with Danish families that had at least one family member diagnosed with T2D. The survey consisted of 36 closed questions on demographics, usage of the Internet, preferences in the source of information, interest in online information on six problem domains within family life related to T2D, preferences towards the delivery format of online information, and peer-to-peer communication. Two open-ended questions were also included to elicit any additional comments or suggestions about improving online information on T2D regarding family life. Results: Fifty participants from 22 families with T2D answered the questionnaire individually. Relatives (25/28, 89%) and patients (22/22, 100%) indicated that information on T2D is relevant for them, while indicating that the Internet is the first or second preferred source when in need of information on T2D (25/28, 89% vs 21/22, 95%). Only a minority of the participants indicated that they had searched the Internet to gain knowledge on T2D regarding family life (9/28, 32% vs 10/22, 46%). Also, patients were more likely to have used the Internet to gain information on T2D (P=.027). Both groups indicated a preference for watching videos or reading about T2D in relation to family life while a minority of the participants indicated an interest in peer-to-peer communication. Regarding the six problem domains, the domains Support, Knowledge, and Everyday Life were slightly more popular. These three domains were considered interesting by at least 79% (22/28) and 73% (16/22) of the relatives and patients respectively, while the domains Communication, Worries, and Roles were considered interesting by at least 46% (20/28) and 50% (11/22). Conclusions: Despite an interest in online information on T2D, there appears to be an unsatisfied need for more supportive online information on T2D aimed at Danish families with T2D. Based on family preferences, online information should focus on the six problem domains and be presented through text and videos by health care practitioners and peers. Peer-to-peer communication elements may be beneficial, but are only expected to be used by a very limited number of families.

  • Diabetic foot care. Source: Image created by the Authors; Copyright: The Authors; URL: http://diabetes.jmir.org/2017/2/e22/; License: Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY).

    Views of Patients on Using mHealth to Monitor and Prevent Diabetic Foot Ulcers: Qualitative Study

    Abstract:

    Background: People with diabetes are at risk for diabetic foot ulcers (DFUs), which can lead to limb loss and a significant decrease in quality of life. Evidence suggests that mHealth can be an effective tool in diabetes self-management. mHealth presents an opportunity for the prevention and monitoring of DFUs. However, there is a paucity of research that explores its effectiveness in the DFU patient population, as well as the views and attitudes of these patients toward technology and mHealth. Objective: This study aimed to explore the views, attitudes, and experiences of a diabetic patient population with or at risk of DFUs regarding technology, mHealth, and the diabetic foot. Methods: We used a qualitative research approach using in-depth interviews with 8 patients with DFUs. Questions were structured around experience with technology, current health practices related to diabetic foot care, and thoughts on using an mHealth device that prevents and monitors DFUs. We transcribed and thematically analyzed all interviews. Results: All patients had positive responses for an mHealth intervention aimed at preventing and monitoring DFUs. We found 4 themes in the data: diversity in use of technology, feet-checking habits, 2-way communication with health care professionals (HCPs), and functionality. There were varying levels of familiarity with and dependence on technology within this patient population. These relationships correlated with distinct generations found in North America, including baby boomers and Generation X. Furthermore, we found that most patients performed daily feet checks to monitor any changes in health. However, some did not perform feet checks prior to the development of a DFU. Patients expressed interest in 2-way communication with HCPs that would allow for easier appointment scheduling, sharing of medical data, decreased number of visits, and use of alerts for when medical attention is required. Patients also identified conditions of functionality for the mHealth intervention. These included consideration of debilitating complications because of diabetes, such as retinopathy and decreased mobility; ease of use of the intervention; and implementation of virtual communities to support continued use of the intervention. Conclusions: Our patient population expressed an interest in mHealth for preventing and monitoring DFUs, although some participants were not frequent users of technology. mHealth continues to show potential in improving patient outcomes, and this study provides a foundation for designing interventions specific to a DFU population. Further research is needed to confirm these findings.

  • Source: Image created by the authors; Copyright: The authors; URL: http://www.city.ac.uk/health/facilities/city-tecs; License: Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY).

    The Effect of Telehealth on Quality of Life and Psychological Outcomes Over a 12-Month Period in a Diabetes Cohort Within the Whole Systems Demonstrator...

    Abstract:

    Background: Much is written about the promise of telehealth and there is great enthusiasm about its potential. However, many studies of telehealth do not meet orthodox quality standards and there are few studies examining quality of life in diabetes as an outcome. Objective:  To assess the impact of home-based telehealth (remote monitoring of physiological, symptom and self-care behavior data for long-term conditions) on generic and disease-specific health-related quality of life, anxiety, and depressive symptoms over 12 months in patients with diabetes. Remote monitoring provides the potential to improve quality of life, through the reassurance it provides patients. Methods: The study focused on participant-reported outcomes of patients with diabetes within the Whole Systems Demonstrator (WSD) Telehealth Questionnaire Study, nested within a pragmatic cluster-randomized trial of telehealth (the WSD Telehealth Trial), held across 3 regions of England. Telehealth was compared with usual-care, with general practice as the unit of randomization. Participant-reported outcome measures (Short-Form 12, EuroQual-5D, Diabetes Health Profile scales, Brief State-Trait Anxiety Inventory, and Centre for Epidemiological Studies Depression Scale) were collected at baseline, short-term (4 months) and long-term (12months) follow-ups. Intention-to-treat analyses testing treatment effectiveness, were conducted using multilevel models controlling for practice clustering and a range of covariates. Analyses assumed participants received their allocated treatment and were conducted for participants who completed the baseline plus at least one follow-up assessment (n=317).  Results:  Primary analyses showed differences between telehealth and usual care were small and only reached significance for 1 scale (diabetes health profile-disinhibited eating, P=.006). The magnitude of differences between trial arms did not reach the trial-defined minimal clinically important difference of 0.3 standard deviations for most outcomes. Effect sizes (Hedge's g) ranged from 0.015 to 0.143 for Generic quality of life (QoL) measures and 0.018 to 0.394 for disease specific measures. Conclusions: Second generation home-based telehealth as implemented in the WSD evaluation was not effective in the subsample of people with diabetes. Overall, telehealth did not improve or have a deleterious effect quality of life or psychological outcomes for patients with diabetes over a 12-month period.

  • The One Drop | Mobile app for Apple iOS, Apple Watch, or Android. Source: Image created by the authors; Copyright: The authors; URL: http://onedrop.today/; License: Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY).

    One Drop | Mobile: An Evaluation of Hemoglobin A1c Improvement Linked to App Engagement

    Abstract:

    Background: Three recent reviews evaluated 19 studies testing the hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) benefit of 16 diabetes apps, including 5 publicly available apps. Most studies relied on small samples and did not link app engagement with outcomes. Objective: This study assessed both HbA1c change in a large sample of people using the One Drop | Mobile app and associations between app engagement and changes in HbA1c. Methods: The One Drop | Mobile app for iOS and Android is designed to manually and passively (via Apple HealthKit, Google Fit, and the One Drop | Chrome blood glucose meter) store, track, and share data. Users can schedule medication reminders, view statistics, set goals, track health outcomes, and get data-driven insights. In June 2017, we queried data on people with diabetes using the app who had entered at least 2 HbA1c values in the app >60 and ≤365 days apart. Multiple imputation corrected for missing data. Unadjusted and adjusted mixed effects repeated measures models tested mean HbA1c change by time, diabetes type, and their interaction. Multiple regression models assessed relationships between using the app to track food, activity, blood glucose, and medications and HbA1c change. Results: The sample (N=1288) included people with type 1 diabetes (T1D) (n=367) or type 2 diabetes (T2D) (n=921) who were 35% female, diagnosed with diabetes for a mean 9.4 (SD 9.9) years, and tracked an average 1646.1 (SD 3621.9) self-care activities in One Drop | Mobile between their first (mean 8.14% [SD 2.06%]) and second HbA1c entry (mean 6.98% [SD 1.1%]). HbA1c values were significantly associated with user-entered average blood glucose 90 days before the second HbA1c entry (rho=.73 to .75, P<.001). HbA1c decreased by an absolute 1.07% (unadjusted and adjusted F=292.03, P<.001) from first to second HbA1c entry. There was a significant interaction between diabetes type and HbA1c. Both groups significantly improved, but users with T2D had a greater HbA1c decrease over time than users with T1D (F=10.54, P<.001). For users with T2D (n=921), HbA1c decreased by an absolute 1.27% (F=364.50, P<.001) from first to second HbA1c entry. Finally, using One Drop | Mobile to record food was associated with greater HbA1c reductions even after adjusting for covariates and after also adjusting for insulin use for users with T2D (all P<.05). Conclusions: People with T1D and T2D reported a 1.07% to 1.27% absolute reduction in HbA1c during a median 4 months of using the One Drop | Mobile app. Using the app to track self-care was associated with improved HbA1c. More research is needed on the health benefits of publicly available diabetes apps, particularly studies associating app engagement with short- and long-term effects.

  • Source: The Authors; Copyright: Cheryl Conway; URL: http://diabetes.jmir.org/2017/2/e20/; License: Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY).

    Digital Health for Medication Adherence in Adult Diabetes or Hypertension: An Integrative Review

    Abstract:

    Background: Optimal management of chronic diseases, such as type 2 diabetes and hypertension, often include prescription medications. Medication adherence (MA) is one component of self-management. Optimization through digital health—eHealth and mHealth—could enhance patient awareness and/or communication between the patient and provider. Objective: Medication adherence is a major issue that affects 50%-60% of chronically ill adults. Digital health refers to eHealth and mHealth, collectively, and as these technologies become more accessible, remote health delivery is increasingly available as an adjunct to improve medication adherence; communicate with patients and providers; and provide education to patients, families, and communities. The objective of this integrative review was to examine the types of digital health technologies that targeted medication adherence in the adult population with diabetes or hypertension. Methods: An integrative review was conducted using databases within EBSCOhost, PubMed, and Scopus. Eligible studies available as of September 2016 had to be written in English, had to contain digital health interventions to improve medication adherence to prescription medications in adults 18 years or older, and had to focus on diabetes or hypertension. Results: Of the 337 located studies, 13 (3.9%) used a digital health intervention for medication adherence to prescribed medications for diabetes or hypertension and were assessed according to the Chronic Care Model. Conclusions: The 13 studies included in this review found no conclusive evidence of improved medication adherence using digital health interventions such as interactive voice response (IVR), short message service (SMS) text messaging, telemonitoring, and interactive software technology. Among the 13 studies were digital health interventions that foster medication adherence via one-way communication to the patient or two-way communication between the patient and health care provider for adjunct medication adherence strategies. More research is needed to determine which digital health interventions are most beneficial for individuals with diabetes or hypertension.

  • TOC for JMIR website. Source: vividfix; Copyright: vividfix (vxstudio@vividfix.com) Copy approval# NACO/VFX/0217/0089; License: Licensed by the authors.

    Diabetes App-Related Text Messages From Health Care Professionals in Conjunction With a New Wireless Glucose Meter With a Color Range Indicator Improves...

    Abstract:

    Background: Mobile diabetes apps enable health care professionals (HCPs) to monitor patient progress, offer remote consultations, and allow more effective and informed treatment decisions between patients and HCPs. The OneTouch Reveal app aggregates data from a blood glucose meter and provides analytics to help patients and HCPs visualize glycemic trends and patterns, enabling more informed treatment and lifestyle decisions. The app also allows patients and HCPs to keep connected by exchanging text messages (short message service [SMS]) or progress reports via email. Objective: The primary objective of our study was to assess changes in glycemic control and overall experiences of patients and HCPs using the app in conjunction with the wireless OneTouch Verio Flex blood glucose meter. Methods: We randomly assigned 137 adults with type 1 (T1DM) or type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) and a glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c) level of ≥7.5% and ≤11.0% to use the glucose meter alone or glucose meter plus the app for 24 weeks. The meter + app group were scheduled to receive diabetes-related text messages from their HCP every 2 weeks (total of 12 texts). Clinical measures and self-reported outcomes were assessed during face-to-face clinic visits between the participant and a diabetes nurse at baseline, week 12, and week 24. Results: In 128 completed participants, HbA1c decreased after 12 and 24 weeks in both the meter-only (n=66) (0.56% and 0.55%, respectively) and meter + app groups (n=62) (0.78% and 0.67%, respectively) compared with baseline (each P<.001). The difference in HbA1c reduction between the 2 groups was not statistically significant at 12 or 24 weeks (P=.12 and P=.45, respectively). However, the decrease in HbA1c was greater in T2DM participants using the meter + app after 12 weeks (1.04%) than in T2DM participants using the meter alone (0.58%; P=.09). In addition, decrease in HbA1c in participants using the meter + app who received at least 10 diabetes-related text messages (1.05%) was significantly greater than in meter-only participants (P<.01). Conclusions: Use of the OneTouch Verio Flex glucose meter alone or in combination with the OneTouch Reveal diabetes app was associated with significant improvements in glycemic control after 12 and 24 weeks. Improvements using the app were greatest in participants with T2DM and those participants who received the highest number of HCP text messages. This study suggests that real-time availability of patient data and the ability to send personalized diabetes-related text messages can assist HCPs to improve glycemic control in patients between scheduled visits. Trial Registration: Clinicaltrials.gov NCT02429024; https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT02429024 (Archived by WebCite at http://www.webcitation.org/6sCTDRa1l)

  • Source: Pixabay; Copyright: Alexandra / München; URL: https://pixabay.com/en/phone-models-generations-old-1678289/; License: Public Domain (CC0).

    Improving Glycemic Control With a Standardized Text-Message and Phone-Based Intervention: A Community Implementation

    Abstract:

    Background: Type II diabetes mellitus (T2DM) presents a major disease burden in the United States. Outpatient glycemic control among patients with T2DM remains difficult. Telemedicine shows great potential as an adjunct therapy to aid in glycemic control in real-world settings. Objective: We aimed to explore the effectiveness of EpxDiabetes, a novel digital health intervention, in improving hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) and fasting blood glucose (FBG) among patients with uncontrolled diabetes. Methods: We recruited 396 patients from a community clinic in St. Louis, Missouri, from a database of patients diagnosed with T2DM and with a most recent HbA1c >7% as part of a quality improvement project. An automated call or text-messaging system was used to monitor patient-reported FBG. If determined to be elevated, care managers were notified by email, text, or electronic medical record alert. Participants self-reported their FBG data by replying to EpxDiabetes automated phone calls or text messages. Data were subsequently analyzed, triaged, and shared with providers to enable appropriate follow-up and care plan adjustments. Absolute HbA1c reduction, patient engagement, and absolute patient-reported FBG reduction were examined at approximately 6 months post implementation. Results: EpxDiabetes had an average 95.6% patient response rate to messages at least once per month and an average 71.1% response rate to messages at least once per week. Subsequent HbA1c drop with EpxDiabetes use over 4 months was -1.15% (95% CI -1.58 to -0.71) for patients with HbA1c >8% at baseline compared to the change in HbA1c over 4 months prior to the implementation of EpxDiabetes of only -0.005 points (95% CI -0.28 to 0.27), P=.0018. Conclusions: EpxDiabetes may help reduce HbA1c in patients with high HbA1c baselines (>8%). The intervention demonstrates high patient engagement sustainable for at least 6 months.

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