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Design and implementation of an interactive website to support long-term maintenance of weight loss.

Stevens VJ, Funk KL, Brantley PJ, Erlinger TP, Myers VH, Champagne CM, Bauck A, Samuel-Hodge CD, Hollis JF - J. Med. Internet Res. (2008)

Bottom Line: We tracked the proportion of participants with at least one log-in per month, and analyzed log-ins as a result of automated prompts.Email and telephone prompts appear to be very effective at helping participants sustain ongoing website use.Developing interactive websites is expensive, complex, and time consuming.

View Article: PubMed Central - HTML - PubMed

Affiliation: Kaiser Permanente, Center for Health Research, Portland, OR 97227, USA.

ABSTRACT

Background: For most individuals, long-term maintenance of weight loss requires long-term, supportive intervention. Internet-based weight loss maintenance programs offer considerable potential for meeting this need. Careful design processes are required to maximize adherence and minimize attrition.

Objective: This paper describes the development, implementation and use of a Web-based intervention program designed to help those who have recently lost weight sustain their weight loss over 1 year.

Methods: The weight loss maintenance website was developed over a 1-year period by an interdisciplinary team of public health researchers, behavior change intervention experts, applications developers, and interface designers. Key interactive features of the final site include social support, self-monitoring, written guidelines for diet and physical activity, links to appropriate websites, supportive tools for behavior change, check-in accountability, tailored reinforcement messages, and problem solving and relapse prevention training. The weight loss maintenance program included a reminder system (automated email and telephone messages) that prompted participants to return to the website if they missed their check-in date. If there was no log-in response to the email and telephone automated prompts, a staff member called the participant. We tracked the proportion of participants with at least one log-in per month, and analyzed log-ins as a result of automated prompts.

Results: The mean age of the 348 participants enrolled in an ongoing randomized trial and assigned to use the website was 56 years; 63% were female, and 38% were African American. While weight loss data will not be available until mid-2008, website use remained high during the first year with over 80% of the participants still using the website during month 12. During the first 52 weeks, participants averaged 35 weeks with at least one log-in. Email and telephone prompts appear to be very effective at helping participants sustain ongoing website use.

Conclusions: Developing interactive websites is expensive, complex, and time consuming. We found that extensive paper prototyping well in advance of programming and a versatile product manager who could work with project staff at all levels of detail were essential to keeping the development process efficient.

Trial registration: clinicaltrials.gov NCT00054925.

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Related in: MedlinePlus

Percent of participants with at least one log-in per month
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figure7: Percent of participants with at least one log-in per month

Mentions: Weight loss data from the trial will not be available until mid-2008, but preliminary data on website use during the first year following randomization are presented here. During the first year, active website use (defined as at least one log-in per month) remained high, with over 80% of the participants still using the website in month 12 (Figure 7). In other words, approximately 20% of participants were no longer active users of the website after 12 months of the intervention. Furthermore, during the first 52 weeks, participants averaged 35 weeks with at least one log-in.


Design and implementation of an interactive website to support long-term maintenance of weight loss.

Stevens VJ, Funk KL, Brantley PJ, Erlinger TP, Myers VH, Champagne CM, Bauck A, Samuel-Hodge CD, Hollis JF - J. Med. Internet Res. (2008)

Percent of participants with at least one log-in per month
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC2483846&req=5

figure7: Percent of participants with at least one log-in per month
Mentions: Weight loss data from the trial will not be available until mid-2008, but preliminary data on website use during the first year following randomization are presented here. During the first year, active website use (defined as at least one log-in per month) remained high, with over 80% of the participants still using the website in month 12 (Figure 7). In other words, approximately 20% of participants were no longer active users of the website after 12 months of the intervention. Furthermore, during the first 52 weeks, participants averaged 35 weeks with at least one log-in.

Bottom Line: We tracked the proportion of participants with at least one log-in per month, and analyzed log-ins as a result of automated prompts.Email and telephone prompts appear to be very effective at helping participants sustain ongoing website use.Developing interactive websites is expensive, complex, and time consuming.

View Article: PubMed Central - HTML - PubMed

Affiliation: Kaiser Permanente, Center for Health Research, Portland, OR 97227, USA.

ABSTRACT

Background: For most individuals, long-term maintenance of weight loss requires long-term, supportive intervention. Internet-based weight loss maintenance programs offer considerable potential for meeting this need. Careful design processes are required to maximize adherence and minimize attrition.

Objective: This paper describes the development, implementation and use of a Web-based intervention program designed to help those who have recently lost weight sustain their weight loss over 1 year.

Methods: The weight loss maintenance website was developed over a 1-year period by an interdisciplinary team of public health researchers, behavior change intervention experts, applications developers, and interface designers. Key interactive features of the final site include social support, self-monitoring, written guidelines for diet and physical activity, links to appropriate websites, supportive tools for behavior change, check-in accountability, tailored reinforcement messages, and problem solving and relapse prevention training. The weight loss maintenance program included a reminder system (automated email and telephone messages) that prompted participants to return to the website if they missed their check-in date. If there was no log-in response to the email and telephone automated prompts, a staff member called the participant. We tracked the proportion of participants with at least one log-in per month, and analyzed log-ins as a result of automated prompts.

Results: The mean age of the 348 participants enrolled in an ongoing randomized trial and assigned to use the website was 56 years; 63% were female, and 38% were African American. While weight loss data will not be available until mid-2008, website use remained high during the first year with over 80% of the participants still using the website during month 12. During the first 52 weeks, participants averaged 35 weeks with at least one log-in. Email and telephone prompts appear to be very effective at helping participants sustain ongoing website use.

Conclusions: Developing interactive websites is expensive, complex, and time consuming. We found that extensive paper prototyping well in advance of programming and a versatile product manager who could work with project staff at all levels of detail were essential to keeping the development process efficient.

Trial registration: clinicaltrials.gov NCT00054925.

Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus