My Road Ahead: Results from an RCT evaluating an Online Psychological Support Program for Men with Prostate Cancer — ASN Events

My Road Ahead: Results from an RCT evaluating an Online Psychological Support Program for Men with Prostate Cancer (#87)

Addie Wootten 1 2 3 , Jo-Anne Abbott 4 , Denny Meyer 5 , David Austin 6 , Britt Klein 7 , Declan G Murphy 3 8 , Anthony J Costello 1 2 3
  1. Australian Prostate Cancer Research, Richmond, VIC, Australia
  2. Department of Urology, Royal Melbourne Hospital, Parkville, VIC, Australia
  3. Epworth Prostate Centre, Epworth Healthcare, Richmond, VIC, Australia
  4. National eTherapy Centre, Swinburne University of Technology, Hawthorn, VIC, Australia
  5. School of Psychology, Swinburne University of Technology, Hawthorn, Vic, Australia
  6. School of Psychology, Deakin University, Burwood, Vic, Australia
  7. DVC - Research and Innovation Portfolio and the Faculty of Health, Federation University, Ballarat, Vic, Australia
  8. Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, East Melbourne, VIC, Australia

This study aimed to develop and assess the efficacy of a unique online psychological intervention that is accessible, user friendly and engaging to men with prostate cancer and that reduces the stigma of psychological distress in the context of prostate cancer.

My Road Ahead is an online CBT-based self-directed intervention delivered over 6 modules. Participants were randomly assigned to one of three (3) intervention arms. Group 1: online intervention (MRA only), group 2: online intervention plus access to the moderated forum (MRA+forum); Group 3: moderated forum only (Forum only). Participants completed the DASS-21, the Prostate Cancer-Related Quality of Life scale, and the International Index of Erectile Function (IIEF).

This paper presents pre-post intervention results from 142 participants who were randomly assigned to the three groups. The majority of men had undergone a radical prostatectomy (88%). A comparison of pre-treatment and post-treatment psychological distress levels showed significant differences between the groups with the MRA+Forum group exhibiting the greatest improvement. Regression analyses suggested that the MRA+Forum group was particularly successful in reducing the highest levels of psychological distress, Health-Worry and Regret and thereby reducing psychological distress further, as well as improving sexual satisfaction and, to a lesser extent improving orgasm function and masculine self-esteem.

This is the first randomised controlled trial to assess the efficacy of a self-directed online psychological intervention for men with prostate cancer that we are aware of. These preliminary results indicate that the intervention in combination with access to a moderated forum provides an effective intervention in reducing psychological distress and improving sexual satisfaction.