(HealthDay News) — Mobile health (mHealth) technology can potentially improve overall cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk, according to a review published online June 7 in the Canadian Journal of Cardiology.

Harry Klimis, M.B.B.S., from the University of Sydney, and colleagues reviewed mHealth interventions that target multiple cardiovascular risk factors in the context of primary and secondary prevention. The models of mHealth delivery were generally smartphone applications and text messaging.

The researchers found some evidence that mHealth interventions improve individual CVD risk factors; however, few randomized controlled trials have assessed the feasibility and effectiveness of mHealth approaches for targeting multiple CVD risk factors. A number of mHealth interventions aim to deliver secondary prevention to patients with CVD. mHealth programs generally improve overall CVD risk, at least in the short term; positive results were seen with the Tobacco, Exercise, and Diet Messages and Text4Heart text message-based interventions. Text message-based interventions have also shown promise in optimizing medication adherence. Many of the cardiovascular mHealth options available to consumers have not undergone significant evaluation and do not have U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval.

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“There is evidence supporting the utility of mHealth programs, at least in the short-term,” the authors write. “However, there are many unknown variables, including which mode of mHealth (or combination of) would be most efficacious. The current challenge is ensuring patients have access to evidence-based choices that have the input of clinicians.”

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