Journal of General Internal Medicine

, Volume 25, Issue 12, pp 1315–1322 | Cite as

Outcomes of Minimal and Moderate Support Versions of an Internet-Based Diabetes Self-Management Support Program

  • Russell E. GlasgowEmail author
  • Deanna Kurz
  • Diane King
  • Jennifer M. Dickman
  • Andrew J. Faber
  • Eve Halterman
  • Tim Wooley
  • Deborah J. Toobert
  • Lisa A. Strycker
  • Paul A. Estabrooks
  • Diego Osuna
  • Debra Ritzwoller
Original Research



Internet and other interactive technology-based programs offer great potential for practical, effective, and cost-efficient diabetes self-management (DSM) programs capable of reaching large numbers of patients. This study evaluated minimal and moderate support versions of an Internet-based diabetes self-management program, compared to an enhanced usual care condition.


A three-arm practical randomized trial was conducted to evaluate minimal contact and moderate contact versions of an Internet-based diabetes self-management program, offered in English and Spanish, compared to enhanced usual care. A heterogeneous sample of 463 type 2 patients was randomized and 82.5% completed a 4-month follow-up. Primary outcomes were behavior changes in healthy eating, physical activity, and medication taking. Secondary outcomes included hemoglobin A1c, body mass index, lipids, and blood pressure.


The Internet-based intervention produced significantly greater improvements than the enhanced usual care condition on three of four behavioral outcomes (effect sizes [d] for healthy eating = 0.32; fat intake = 0.28; physical activity= 0.19) in both intent-to-treat and complete-cases analyses. These changes did not translate into differential improvements in biological outcomes during the 4-month study period. Added contact did not further enhance outcomes beyond the minimal contact intervention.


The Internet intervention meets several of the RE-AIM criteria for potential public health impact, including reaching a large number of persons, and being practical, feasible, and engaging for participants, but with mixed effectiveness in improving outcomes, and consistent results across different subgroups. Additional research is needed to evaluate longer-term outcomes, enhance effectiveness and cost-effectiveness, and understand the linkages between intervention processes and outcomes.


internet diabetes self-management RCT health disparities behavior change practical trial 



This study was supported by grant #DK35524 from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.

Conflict of Interest

None disclosed.

Supplementary material

11606_2010_1480_MOESM1_ESM.doc (143 kb)
Table A1 Track My Progress (DOC 143 kb)
11606_2010_1480_MOESM2_ESM.doc (158 kb)
Table A2 Your Food Choices Action Plan (DOC 158 kb)


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Copyright information

© Society of General Internal Medicine 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Russell E. Glasgow
    • 1
    Email author
  • Deanna Kurz
    • 1
  • Diane King
    • 1
  • Jennifer M. Dickman
    • 1
  • Andrew J. Faber
    • 1
  • Eve Halterman
    • 1
  • Tim Wooley
    • 3
  • Deborah J. Toobert
    • 2
  • Lisa A. Strycker
    • 2
  • Paul A. Estabrooks
    • 4
  • Diego Osuna
    • 1
  • Debra Ritzwoller
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute for Health Research, Kaiser Permanente ColoradoDenverUSA
  2. 2.Oregon Research InstituteEugeneUSA
  3. 3.InterVision MediaEugeneUSA
  4. 4.Virginia Polytechnic Institute, State UniversityRoanokeUSA

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