The field of genetic risk is advancing at a pace that the general public, and even health professionals, have trouble keeping up with. The media reports new discoveries frequently, often related to 'cancer-prone genes', or hereditary cancer syndromes, and the availability of cancer mutation testing. Health professionals often lack time to consult with patients over new discoveries showcased in the evening news. Thus, many people are left uncertain of their personal risk for cancer, worried about the possibilities, and unsure of what to do. There is a need for delivery of personalized, accurate, up-to-date risk information to the general public. The investigators believe the best way to deliver this rapidly changing and sensitive information is via the new media available through the Internet, on the World Wide Web (WWW), now accessible through a telephone connection. The WWW can deliver up-to-date personalized information interactively, through test, audio, or video, at a pace chosen by the user. Studies are needed to demonstrate the value of this technology in public health. The investigators propose to do this by conducting a population-based randomized test of an interactive Web-based breast cancer risk information intervention to help women from the general public cope with their breast cancer risk and to make appropriate screening choices. They will identify women from the public, screen them for simple eligibility criteria, and randomize them to receive either the intervention package or to participate in a delayed intervention control arm. The intervention will be based on a project-specific website integrated with existing cancer information services, delivered directly to users' homes through their televisions via Web TV, and augmented with interactive components to maximize the user's ability to access information in a timely and satisfactory manner. A small proportion of eligible participants will be offered genetic counseling to consider genetic mutation testing. The main outcomes of this project are cancer worry, perceived risk, quality of life, and breast screening intentions.
|Bush, Nigel E; Bowen, Deborah J; Wooldridge, Jean et al. (2004) What do we mean by Internet access? A framework for health researchers. Prev Chronic Dis 1:A15|
|Unruh, Heidi K; Bowen, Deborah J; Meischke, Hendrika et al. (2004) Women's approaches to the use of new technology for cancer risk information. Women Health 40:59-78|