Effects of a tailored interactive multimedia computer program on determinants of colorectal cancer screening: a randomized controlled pilot study in physician offices

Patient Educ Couns. 2007 Apr;66(1):67-74. doi: 10.1016/j.pec.2006.10.009. Epub 2006 Dec 6.


Objective: Screening reduces colorectal cancer (CRC) mortality and is cost-effective, yet uptake is suboptimal. We developed and evaluated a personally tailored interactive multimedia computer program (IMCP) to encourage CRC screening.

Methods: Randomized controlled pilot trial evaluating the effects of the personally tailored CRC screening IMCP as compared with a non-tailored IMCP ("electronic leaflet") control. The IMCP was tailored to patient preference, self-efficacy, barriers, and readiness and deployed in busy primary care offices before scheduled doctor visits. Main outcomes were: CRC screening knowledge, self-efficacy, benefits and barriers, and stage of readiness.

Results: We enrolled 54 subjects; software glitches occurred in 5, leaving 49 subjects for analysis. In adjusted analyses, compared with control, the experimental group had a significant increase in CRC screening self-efficacy (p=0.049), a significantly greater likelihood of moving to a more advanced stage of readiness for screening (p=0.034), a trend toward fewer perceived barriers to screening (p=0.149), and no difference in perceived benefits or knowledge of screening.

Conclusion: Our personally tailored IMCP was significantly more effective than control in bolstering CRC screening readiness and self-efficacy.

Practice implications: If further streamlined, personally tailored IMCPs might be usefully deployed in busy primary care offices to improve uptake of CRC screening.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Algorithms
  • California
  • Colorectal Neoplasms / diagnosis*
  • Computer-Assisted Instruction / methods*
  • Educational Measurement
  • Female
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
  • Humans
  • Likelihood Functions
  • Male
  • Mass Screening / methods
  • Mass Screening / psychology*
  • Mass Screening / statistics & numerical data
  • Multimedia*
  • Needs Assessment
  • Office Visits
  • Pamphlets
  • Patient Acceptance of Health Care / psychology*
  • Patient Acceptance of Health Care / statistics & numerical data
  • Patient Care Planning / organization & administration
  • Patient Education as Topic / methods*
  • Pilot Projects
  • Primary Health Care / organization & administration
  • Self Efficacy
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Teaching Materials