Published on 29.12.16 in Vol 2, No 1 (2016): December
A Patient-Centered Approach to Developing a Mobile-Based Self-Management Intervention, Featuring a Virtual Coach, for Adolescents With Irritable Bowel Syndrome
Background: Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a complex, chronic, functional disorder that has no cure and is characterized by abdominal pain/discomfort and altered bowel habits; other symptoms may include nausea, vomiting, and bloating; and it can also result in social isolation and shame. While in-person self-management skills training for IBS has been shown to be effective in adults and older adolescents, this training is inaccessible for most. Mobile technology may be a feasible way to deliver an intervention to adolescents designed to promote self-management and positive coping skills.
Objective: To conduct in-depth interviews with key stakeholders to inform the development of a mobile-based intervention, featuring an empathetic virtual coach, designed to promote self-management skills and positive coping skills in adolescents with IBS.
Methods: A total of 12 adolescents with IBS and 12 parents recruited from the UCLA Pediatric Pain Program (PPP) and Whole Child LA, and 12 multi-disciplinary health care providers, including gastroenterologists, nutritionists, and mental health providers, participated in 60-minute in-depth interviews. Interview guides were designed to elicit information about functioning challenges and coping strategies and to gather feedback about preliminary features for a mobile-based intervention and preferences for new features. Participants were shown images of three proposed main features and a video animation of a virtual coach. Thematic analysis informed coding and analysis of interview data.
Results: Results of the in-depth interviews revealed 6 main themes around adolescents’ functioning, coping, and preferences for a mobile-based intervention. Data from the interviews were incorporated into a demonstration version of the mobile app using emotional modeling algorithms for a virtual coach.
Conclusions: A patient-centered approach is a useful way to inform development of a mobile-based intervention for adolescents struggling to manage IBS. A next phase of the research includes a pilot study with 24 adolescents using the application and acceptance testing with caregivers and providers.
- virtual coach;
- mobile application;
- irritable bowel syndrome;
- emotional modeling;
This poster was presented at the Connected Health Symposium 2016, October 20-21, Boston, MA, United States. The poster is displayed as an image inand as a PDF in .
Multimedia Appendix 1
Poster.PDF File (Adobe PDF File), 2MB
Edited by T Hale; submitted 04.06.16; peer-reviewed by CHS Scientific Program Committee; accepted 04.08.16; published 29.12.16
©Elizabeth Donovan, Tara Cousineau, Jennie CI Tsao, Lonnie K Zeltzer, Subhadra Evans. Originally published in Iproceedings (http://www.iproc.org), 29.12.2016.
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