Analysis of Effectiveness and Psychological Techniques Implemented in mHealth Solutions for Middle-Aged and Elderly Adults with Type 2 Diabetes: A Narrative Review of the Literature
Analysis of Effectiveness and Psychological Techniques Implemented in mHealth Solutions for Middle-Aged and Elderly Adults with Type 2 Diabetes: A Narrative Review of the Literature, 2021 (1.504Mb)
Background: in diabetes, multiple mHealth solutions were produced and implemented for self-management behaviors. However, little research on the effectiveness of psychological techniques implemented within these mHealth solutions was carried out, and even less with the elderly population where technological barriers might exist. Reliable evidence generated through a comprehensive evaluation of mHealth interventions may accelerate its growth for successful long-term implementation and to help to experience mHealth benefits in an enhanced way in all ages. Objective: this study aimed to review mHealth solutions for diabetes self-management in older adults (adherence to treatments and glycemic control) by analyzing the effectiveness of specific psychological techniques implemented. Methods: a narrative review was conducted following preferred reporting items for systematic reviews and meta-analyses (PRISMA) guidelines. PubMed (Medline) and American Psychological Association (APA) PsycInfo databases were searched for published papers that addressed eHealth solutions’ effectiveness for diabetes self-management. Studies in English, Spanish, and/or German of any design were screened, with no time constraints regarding the year of publication. A qualitative analysis of the selected papers was conducted in several steps. Results: this review found 38 studies setting up and analyzing mHealth solutions for older adults. Most research showed improvements in HbA1c, self-management behaviors, and medication adherence in T2DM patients post intervention. However, different mid-to-long term effects were found across studies, specifically concerning the maintenance and adherence to healthy behaviors. The most employed psychological framework was CBT, including techniques such as self-monitoring of outcome behaviors (mostly targeting glycemia measurements and healthy habits as physical activity and/or diet), tailored motivational feedback from medical staff, and psychoeducation or health coaches. The most successful mHealth intervention combined the feature of tailored feedback messages, interactive communication with healthcare professionals, and multifaceted functions. Conclusions: there is a lack of elaborate and detailed information in the literature regarding the factors considered in the design and development of mHealth solutions used as interventions for T2DM self-management in the elderly. Documentation and inclusion of such vital information will foster a transparent and shared decision-making process that will ultimately lead to the development of useful and user-friendly self-management apps that can enhance the quality of life for diabetes patients. Further research adapting mHealth solutions to older adults’ sensory deficits is necessary.
Diabetes; Elderly; Psychological techniques
Vázquez-de Sebastián J, Ciudin A, Castellano-Tejedor C. Analysis of Effectiveness and Psychological Techniques Implemented in mHealth Solutions for Middle-Aged and Elderly Adults with Type 2 Diabetes: A Narrative Review of the Literature. J Clin Med. 2021 Jun 18;10(12):2701.
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