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Mobile health technology (mDiab) for the prevention of type 2 diabetes: protocol for a randomized controlled trial

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posted on 2017-12-12, 00:00 authored by Shruti Muralidharan, V Mohan, R M Anjana, S Jena, N Tandon, Steven AllenderSteven Allender, H Ranjani
BACKGROUND: The prevalence of type 2 diabetes is increasing in epidemic proportions in low- and middle-income countries. There is an urgent need for novel methods to tackle the increasing incidence of diabetes. The ubiquity of mobile phone use and access to Internet makes mobile health (mHealth) technology a viable tool to prevent and manage diabetes. OBJECTIVE: The objective of this randomized controlled trial is to implement and evaluate the feasibility, cost-effectiveness, and sustainability of a reality television-based lifestyle intervention program. This intervention program is delivered via a mobile phone app (mDiab) to approximately 1500 Android smartphone users who are adults at a high risk for type 2 diabetes from three cities in India, namely, Chennai, Bengaluru, and New Delhi. METHODS: The mDiab intervention would be delivered via a mobile phone app along with weekly coach calls for 12 weeks. Each participant will go through a maintenance phase of 6 to 8 months post intervention. Overall, there would be 3 testing time points in the study: baseline, post intervention, and the end of follow-up. The app will enable individuals to track their weight, physical activity, and diet alongside weekly video lessons on type 2 diabetes prevention. RESULTS: The study outcomes are weight loss (primary measure of effectiveness); improvement in cardiometabolic risk factors (ie, waist circumference, blood pressure, glucose, insulin, and lipids); and improvement in physical activity, quality of life, and dietary habits. Sustainability will be assessed through focus group discussions. CONCLUSIONS: If successful, mDiab can be used as a model for translational and implementation research in the use of mHealth technology for diabetes prevention and may be further expanded for the prevention of other noncommunicable diseases such as hypertension and cardiovascular diseases. TRIAL REGISTRATION: Clinical Trials Registry of India CTRI/2015/07/006011 trialid=11841 (Archived by WebCite at



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