A randomized head to head trial of MoodSwings.net.au: An internet based self-help program for bipolar disorder

Lauder, S, Chester, A, Castle, D, Dodd, S, Gliddon, E, Berk, L, Chamberlain, J, Klein, B, Gilbert, M, Austin, D and Berk, M 2015, 'A randomized head to head trial of MoodSwings.net.au: An internet based self-help program for bipolar disorder', Journal of Affective Disorders, vol. 171, pp. 13-21.


Document type: Journal Article
Collection: Journal Articles

Title A randomized head to head trial of MoodSwings.net.au: An internet based self-help program for bipolar disorder
Author(s) Lauder, S
Chester, A
Castle, D
Dodd, S
Gliddon, E
Berk, L
Chamberlain, J
Klein, B
Gilbert, M
Austin, D
Berk, M
Year 2015
Journal name Journal of Affective Disorders
Volume number 171
Start page 13
End page 21
Total pages 9
Publisher Elsevier
Abstract Background Adjunctive psychosocial interventions are efficacious in bipolar disorder, but their incorporation into routine management plans are often confounded by cost and access constraints. We report here a comparative evaluation of two online programs hosted on a single website (www.moodswings.net.au). A basic version, called MoodSwings (MS), contains psychoeducation material and asynchronous discussion boards; and a more interactive program, MoodSwings Plus (MS-Plus), combined the basic psychoeducation material and discussion boards with elements of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. These programs were evaluated in a head-to-head study design. Method Participants with Bipolar I or II disorder (n=156) were randomized to receive either MoodSwings or MoodSwings-Plus. Outcomes included mood symptoms, the occurrence of relapse, functionality, Locus of Control, social support, quality of life and medication adherence. Results Participants in both groups showed baseline to endpoint reductions in mood symptoms and improvements in functionality, quality of life and medication adherence. The MoodSwings-Plus group showed a greater number of within-group changes on symptoms and functioning in depression and mania, quality of life and social support, across both poles of the illness. MoodSwings-Plus was superior to MoodSwings in improvement on symptoms of mania scores at 12 months (p=0.02) but not on the incidence of recurrence. Limitations The study did not have an attention control group and therefore could not demonstrate efficacy of the two active arms. There was notable (81%) attrition by 12 months from baseline. Conclusion This study suggests that both CBT and psychoeducation delivered online may have utility in the management of bipolar disorder. They are feasible, readily accepted, and associated with improvement.
Subject Medical and Health Sciences not elsewhere classified
Keyword(s) Bipolar disorder
CBT
Internet
Online
Psychoeducation
Psychological
DOI - identifier 10.1016/j.jad.2014.08.008
Copyright notice © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
ISSN 0165-0327
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