The Effects of mHealth Interventions on Quality of Life, Anxiety, and Depression in Patients With Coronary Heart Disease: Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials

J Med Internet Res. 2024 Jun 11:26:e52341. doi: 10.2196/52341.

Abstract

Background: Coronary heart disease (CHD) is the leading cause of death globally. In addition, 20% to 40% of the patients with CHD have comorbid mental health issues such as anxiety or depression, affecting the prognosis and quality of life (QoL). Mobile health (mHealth) interventions have been developed and are widely used; however, the evidence for the effects of mHealth interventions on QoL, anxiety, and depression in patients with CHD is currently ambiguous.

Objective: In this study, we aimed to assess the effects of mHealth interventions on QoL, anxiety, and depression in patients with CHD.

Methods: We searched the Cochrane Library, PubMed, Embase, CINAHL, Web of Science, China National Knowledge Infrastructure, and Wanfang databases from inception to August 12, 2023. Eligible studies were randomized controlled trials that involved patients with CHD who received mHealth interventions and that reported on QoL, anxiety, or depression outcomes. We used the Cochrane risk-of-bias tool for randomized trials to evaluate the risk of bias in the studies, ensuring a rigorous and methodologically sound analysis. Review Manager (desktop version 5.4; The Cochrane Collaboration) and Stata MP (version 17.0; StataCorp LLC) were used to conduct the meta-analysis. The effect size was calculated using the standardized mean difference (SMD) and its 95% CI.

Results: The meta-analysis included 23 studies (5406 participants in total) and showed that mHealth interventions significantly improved QoL in patients with CHD (SMD 0.49, 95% CI 0.25-0.72; Z=4.07; P<.001) as well as relieved their anxiety (SMD -0.46, 95% CI -0.83 to -0.08; Z=2.38; P=.02) and depression (SMD -0.34, 95% CI -0.56 to -0.12; Z=3.00; P=.003) compared to usual care. The subgroup analyses indicated a significant effect favoring the mHealth intervention on reducing anxiety and depressive symptoms compared to usual care, especially when (1) the intervention duration was ≥6 months (P=.04 and P=.001), (2) the mHealth intervention was a simple one (only 1 mHealth intervention was used) (P=.01 and P<.001), (3) it was implemented during the COVID-19 pandemic (P=.04 and P=.01), (4) it was implemented in low- or middle-income countries (P=.01 and P=.02), (5) the intervention focused on mental health (P=.01 and P=.007), and (6) adherence rates were high (≥90%; P=.03 and P=.002). In addition, comparing mHealth interventions to usual care, there was an improvement in QoL when (1) the mHealth intervention was a simple one (P<.001), (2) it was implemented in low- or middle-income countries (P<.001), and (3) the intervention focused on mental health (P<.001).

Conclusions: On the basis of the existing evidence, mHealth interventions might be effective in improving QoL and reducing anxiety and depression in patients with CHD. However, large sample, high-quality, and rigorously designed randomized controlled trials are needed to provide further evidence.

Trial registration: PROSPERO CRD42022383858; https://tinyurl.com/3ea2npxf.

Keywords: anxiety; coronary heart disease; depression; meta-analysis; mobile health; mobile phone; quality of life.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Anxiety* / psychology
  • Anxiety* / therapy
  • Coronary Disease* / complications
  • Coronary Disease* / psychology
  • Coronary Disease* / therapy
  • Depression* / psychology
  • Depression* / therapy
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Quality of Life* / psychology
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic*
  • Telemedicine*