Social networking evaluated to improve diabetes management

July 12, 2012

(Medical Xpress) -- Researchers at the UC San Diego School of Medicine are evaluating a new social media tool called Wellaho to treat patients with type I and II diabetes. The clinical trial will study whether the use of social networking can improve patient-physician interactions and the patient’s overall health and wellbeing.

“This trial will study how an online social network may better enable patient care,” said Jason Bronner, MD, associate clinical professor, UC San Diego School of and internist at UC San Diego Health System. “With a controlled group of the patient’s clinicians, friends, family and fellow patients, we will measure any changes in knowledge, attitudes and self care towards .”

Wellaho, developed by Sanitas Inc. in La Jolla, is an interactive online system designed to help patients manage their care outside the hospital. The system is HIPAA compliant, compatible with provider networks, and includes telemedicine capabilities.

provides a common way for patients with chronic disease to learn about their condition while interacting with others in similar situations,” said Bronner. “As opposed to open networks, the use of this tool allows us to ensure that the medical information they receive and share is accurate, safe and absent of advertising.”

The online site provides self-monitoring tools as well as evidenced-based education customized for the patient’s specific condition. Subjects will be monitored for the number of times they access the site, length of use, and number of invited participants. The site will also track measures of weight, blood pressure, and glycostated hemoglobin.

“Long-term, we hope that will learn behaviors that impact blood sugar, control blood pressure, improve satisfaction and potentially decrease cost of care,” said Bronner.

According to the American Diabetes Association, diabetes now affects 25.8 million children and adults in the United States. An additional 79 million Americans are considered pre-diabetic.

Explore further: Ongoing relationship with care provider key for patients with a chronic condition: study

Related Stories

Could 'Love hormone' help treat depression?

February 14, 2012

(Medical Xpress) -- Gazing into your lover’s eyes isn’t only romantic; it also releases a brain chemical called oxytocin that strengthens social bonds in a variety of species.  For some people who suffer from ...

New weight loss surgery folds stomach into smaller size

March 12, 2012

(Medical Xpress) -- Patients seeking a weight-loss surgery that does not require an implanted device or permanent change to their anatomy, have a new clinical trial option at UC San Diego Health System. Santiago Horgan, MD, ...

Recommended for you

Drug prevents type 1 diabetes in mice, study finds

September 14, 2015

The buildup of a substance in the pancreas during the pre-symptomatic stage of Type 1 diabetes is essential to the development of the disease, Stanford University School of Medicine researchers have shown.

Bacteria may cause type 2 diabetes

June 1, 2015

Bacteria and viruses have an obvious role in causing infectious diseases, but microbes have also been identified as the surprising cause of other illnesses, including cervical cancer (Human papilloma virus) and stomach ulcers ...

Engineered hot fat implants reduce weight gain in mice

August 20, 2015

Scientists at the University of California, Berkeley, have developed a novel way to engineer the growth and expansion of energy-burning "good" fat, and then found that this fat helped reduce weight gain and lower blood glucose ...


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.