A smartphone-based self-management intervention for individuals with bipolar disorder (LiveWell): empirical and theoretical framework, intervention design, and study protocol for a randomized controlled trial Journal Article uri icon
Overview
abstract
  • BACKGROUND: Bipolar disorder is a severe mental illness with high morbidity and mortality rates. Even with pharmacological treatment, frequent recurrence of episodes, long episode durations, and persistent interepisode symptoms are common and disruptive. Combining psychotherapy with pharmacotherapy improves outcomes; however, many individuals with bipolar disorder do not receive psychotherapy. Mental health technologies can increase access to self-management strategies derived from empirically supported bipolar disorder psychotherapies while also enhancing treatment by delivering real-time assessments, personalized feedback, and provider alerts. In addition, mental health technologies provide a platform for self-report, app use, and behavioral data collection to advance understanding of the longitudinal course of bipolar disorder, which can then be used to support ongoing improvement of treatment. OBJECTIVE: A description of the theoretical and empirically supported framework, design, and protocol for a randomized controlled trial (RCT) of LiveWell, a smartphone-based self-management intervention for individuals with bipolar disorder, is provided to facilitate the ability to replicate, improve, implement, and disseminate effective interventions for bipolar disorder. The goal of the trial is to determine the effectiveness of LiveWell for reducing relapse risk and symptom burden as well as improving quality of life (QOL) while simultaneously clarifying behavioral targets involved in staying well and better characterizing the course of bipolar disorder and treatment response. METHODS: The study is a single-blind RCT (n=205; 2:3 ratio of usual care vs usual care plus LiveWell). The primary outcome is the time to relapse. Secondary outcomes are percentage time symptomatic, symptom severity, and QOL. Longitudinal changes in target behaviors proposed to mediate the primary and secondary outcomes will also be determined, and their relationships with the outcomes will be assessed. A database of clinical status, symptom severity, real-time self-report, behavioral sensor, app use, and personalized content will be created to better predict treatment response and relapse risk. RESULTS: Recruitment and screening began in March 2017 and ended in April 2019. Follow-up ended in April 2020. The results of this study are expected to be published in 2022. CONCLUSIONS: This study will examine whether LiveWell reduces relapse risk and symptom burden and improves QOL for individuals with bipolar disorder by increasing access to empirically supported self-management strategies. The role of selected target behaviors (medication adherence, sleep duration, routine, and management of signs and symptoms) in these outcomes will also be examined. Simultaneously, a database will be created to initiate the development of algorithms to personalize and improve treatment for bipolar disorder. In addition, we hope that this description of the theoretical and empirically supported framework, intervention design, and study protocol for the RCT of LiveWell will facilitate the ability to replicate, improve, implement, and disseminate effective interventions for bipolar and other mental health disorders. TRIAL REGISTRATION: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT03088462; https://www.clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT03088462. INTERNATIONAL REGISTERED REPORT IDENTIFIER (IRRID): DERR1-10.2196/30710.

  • Link to Article
    publication date
  • 2022
  • published in
    Research
    keywords
  • Cell Phones
  • Drugs and Drug Therapy
  • Mental Disorders
  • Quality of Life
  • Randomized Controlled Trials
  • Self Care
  • Self Report
  • Additional Document Info
    volume
  • 11
  • issue
  • 2