Women's perceptions of participation in an extended contact text message-based weight loss intervention: an explorative study

Job, Jennifer R., Spark, Lauren C., Fjeldsoe, Brianna S., Eakin, Elizabeth G. and Reeves, Marina M. (2017) Women's perceptions of participation in an extended contact text message-based weight loss intervention: an explorative study. JMIR Mhealth and Uhealth, 5 2: e21. doi:10.2196/mhealth.6325


Author Job, Jennifer R.
Spark, Lauren C.
Fjeldsoe, Brianna S.
Eakin, Elizabeth G.
Reeves, Marina M.
Title Women's perceptions of participation in an extended contact text message-based weight loss intervention: an explorative study
Journal name JMIR Mhealth and Uhealth   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 2291-5222
Publication date 2017-02-01
Year available 2017
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.2196/mhealth.6325
Open Access Status DOI
Volume 5
Issue 2
Start page e21
Total pages 8
Place of publication Toronto, ON, Canada
Publisher J M I R Publications
Language eng
Abstract Background: Extending contact with participants after the end of an initial weight loss intervention has been shown to lead to maintained weight loss and related behavioral change. Mobile phone text messaging (short message service, SMS) offers a low-cost and efficacious method to deliver extended contact. In this rapidly developing area, formative work is required to understand user perspectives of text message technology. An extended contact intervention delivered by text messages following an initial telephone-delivered weight loss intervention in breast cancer survivors provided this opportunity.
Formatted abstract
Background: Extending contact with participants after the end of an initial weight loss intervention has been shown to lead to maintained weight loss and related behavioral change. Mobile phone text messaging (short message service, SMS) offers a low-cost and efficacious method to deliver extended contact. In this rapidly developing area, formative work is required to understand user perspectives of text message technology. An extended contact intervention delivered by text messages following an initial telephone-delivered weight loss intervention in breast cancer survivors provided this opportunity.

Objective: The aim of this study was to qualitatively explore women’s perceptions of participation in an extended contact intervention using text messaging to support long-term weight loss, physical activity, and dietary behavioral change.

Methods: Following the end of an initial 6-month randomized controlled trial of a telephone-delivered weight loss intervention (versus usual care), participants received a 6-month extended contact intervention via tailored text messages. Participant perceptions of the different types of text messages, the content, tailoring, timing, and frequency of the text messages, and the length of the intervention were assessed through semistructured interviews conducted after the extended contact intervention. The interviews were transcribed verbatim and analyzed with key themes identified.

Results: Participants (n=27) were a mean age of 56.0 years (SD 7.8) and mean body mass index of 30.4 kg/m2 (SD 4.2) and were at a mean of 16.1 months (SD 3.1) postdiagnosis at study baseline. Participants perceived the text messages to be useful behavioral prompts and felt the messages kept them accountable to their behavioral change goals. The individual tailoring of the text message content and schedules was a key to the acceptability of the messages; however, some women preferred the support and real-time discussion via telephone calls (during the initial intervention) compared with the text messages (during the extended contact intervention).

Conclusions: Text message support was perceived as acceptable for the majority of women as a way of extending intervention contact for weight loss and behavioral maintenance. Text messages supported the maintenance of healthy behaviors established in the intervention phase and kept the women accountable to their goals. A combination of telephone calls and text message support was suggested as a more acceptable option for some of the women for an extended contact intervention.
Keyword Exercise
Diet
Text messaging
Qualitative research
Overweight
Obesity
Weight loss
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
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