BACKGROUND: Cancer-related fatigue (CrF) is the most common and disruptive symptom experienced by cancer survivors. We aimed to develop a theory-based, interactive Web-based intervention designed to facilitate self-management and enhance coping with CrF following cancer treatment.
OBJECTIVE: The aim of our study was to outline the rationale, decision-making processes, methods, and findings which led to the development of a Web-based intervention to be tested in a feasibility trial. This paper outlines the process and method of development of the intervention.
METHODS: An extensive review of the literature and qualitative research was conducted to establish a therapeutic approach for this intervention, based on theory. The psychological principles used in the development process are outlined, and we also clarify hypothesized causal mechanisms. We describe decision-making processes involved in the development of the content of the intervention, input from the target patient group and stakeholders, the design of the website features, and the initial user testing of the website.
RESULTS: The cocreation of the intervention with the experts and service users allowed the design team to ensure that an acceptable intervention was developed. This evidence-based Web-based program is the ﬁrst intervention of its kind based on self-regulation model theory, with the primary aim of targeting the representations of fatigue and enhancing self-management of CrF, speciﬁcally.
CONCLUSIONS: This research sought to integrate psychological theory, existing evidence of effective interventions, empirically derived principles of Web design, and the views of potential users into the systematic planning and design of the intervention of an easy-to-use website for cancer survivors.