Individuals may be more likely to be reassured using a personalized chronic disease risk disclosure tool than a standard non-personalized approach, according to a recent study.
Furthermore, a comprehensive tool provided reassurance to those at risk for developing a chronic disease, with or without interpretation from a health educator, compared to standard education. Unaffected first-degree relatives (FDRs) of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients (n=238) were randomly allocated to: 1) disclosure of RA risk personalized to demographics, genetics, biomarkers, and behaviors using a web-based tool (PRE-RA arm, n=78); 2) PRE-RA with interpretation by a health educator (PRE-RA Plus arm, n=80); and 3) standard RA education (comparison arm, n=80). Concern for developing RA was assessed at baseline and immediately, 6 weeks, 6 months, and 12 months post-intervention. Researchers found:
- FDRs randomized to PRE-RA arms were less concerned about developing RA than the comparison arm at all post-intervention assessments.
- Among those concerned about RA risk at baseline, the PRE-RA (OR=4.7) and PRE-RA Plus (OR=5.2) arms were more likely to have reassurance 6 months post-intervention than the comparison arm.
Marshall AA, Zaccardelli A, Yu Z, et al. Effect of communicating personalized rheumatoid arthritis risk on concern for developing RA: A randomized controlled trial. [Published online ahead of print December 10, 2018]. Patient Educ Couns. doi:10.1016/j.pec.2018.12.011.
This study evaluated a comprehensive tool that provided reassurance to patients who were at risk of developing a chronic disease. First-degree relatives (FDRs) of patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) were designated randomly to 3 categories that included: 1) RA risk demographics, genetics, biomarkers, and behaviors recorded by a web-based tool (PRE-RA), 2) PRE-RA with interpretation by a health educator (PRE-RA Plus), and 3) RA education. Researchers found that FDRs who were randomized to a PRE-RA arm were less concerned about their risk of developing RA than the comparison arm. They also discovered that among those concerned about RA risk, the PRE-RA (OR=4.7), and PRE-RA Plus (OR=5.2) arms were more likely to have reassurance than the comparison arm.—Harold E. Paulus, M.D.; Emeritus Professor; University of California, Los Angeles; Division of Rheumatology.