Healthy Coping (HC) is a key component of self-management for people with DM. HC includes physical exercise/activity and mood. Mobile apps are a promising tool to promote DSME/S for people with DM. Feedback messages can motivate people to change self-management behaviors. This study reports a survey of HC-related feedback messages in DM apps.

We searched “diabetes,” “blood sugar,” “glucose,” and “mood” in iTunes and Google Play to capture apps in English from August-October 2019. We identified 89 out of 1749 DM apps. We tested the apps by entering a range of normal and abnormal values to generate 326 feedback messages. We analyzed the messages regarding DM control, physical exercise, and mood, as well as feedback purpose and timing (Table 1).

All apps provided messages acknowledging input in real time. Many apps allowed self-monitoring of blood glucose (65%), however, out of these 174 feedback messages, none suggested behavioral modification (0%) and few advised goal setting (11%). Only some apps allowed input regarding exercise (12%) and mood (35%). Similarly, few messages suggested behavioral modification (11% and 6% respectively) or goal setting (11% and 6% respectively).

These findings indicate a lack of focus on HC especially regarding physical activity and mood with goal setting and behavioral modifications. Future DM apps should incorporate purposeful messages to engage people with DM in self-management.


Q. Ye: None. S.A. Boren: None. U.Z. Khan: None. E.J. Simoes: None. M. Kim: None.


National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (P30DK092950); University of Missouri Research Council (URC-19-153)

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