Rationale and Methods for a Randomized Controlled Trial of a Dyadic, Web-Based, Weight Loss Intervention among Cancer Survivors and Partners: The DUET Study.
Scalable, effective interventions are needed to address poor diet, insufficient physical activity, and obesity amongst rising numbers of cancer survivors. Interventions targeting survivors and their friends and family may promote both tertiary and primary prevention. The design, rationale, and enrollment of an ongoing randomized controlled trial (RCT) (NCT04132219) to test a web-based lifestyle intervention for cancer survivors and their supportive partners are described, along with the characteristics of the sample recruited. This two-arm, single-blinded RCT randomly assigns 56 dyads (cancer survivor and partner, both with obesity, poor diets, and physical inactivity) to the six-month DUET intervention vs. wait-list control. Intervention delivery and assessment are remotely performed with 0-6 month, between-arm tests comparing body weight status (primary outcome), and secondary outcomes (waist circumference, health indices, and biomarkers of glucose homeostasis, lipid regulation and inflammation). Despite COVID-19, targeted accrual was achieved within 9 months. Not having Internet access was a rare exclusion (<2%). Inability to identify a support partner precluded enrollment of 42% of interested/eligible survivors. The enrolled sample is diverse: ages 23-81 and 38% racial/ethnic minorities. Results support the accessibility and appeal of web-based lifestyle interventions for cancer survivors, though some cancer survivors struggled to enlist support partners and may require alternative strategies.