Acceptance and Use of Home-Based Electronic Symptom Self-Reporting Systems in Patients With Cancer: Systematic Review.

Academic Article


  • BACKGROUND: Electronic symptom self-reporting systems (e-SRS) have been shown to improve symptoms and survival in patients with cancer. However, patient engagement in using e-SRS for voluntary symptom self-reporting is less optimal. Multiple factors can potentially affect patients' acceptance and engagement in using home-based e-SRS. However, such factors have not been fully explored in cancer populations. OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study is to understand the acceptance and use of home-based e-SRS by patients with cancer and identify associated facilitators and barriers. METHODS: PubMed, CINAHL, Scopus, and PsycINFO (January 2010 to March 2020) were searched using a combination of Medical Subject Headings (MeSH) terms and keywords such as symptom self-reporting, electronic/technology, cancer, and their synonyms. Included studies focused on the use of home-based e-SRS by patients with cancer and their families. Studies on patients' use of e-SRS in clinical settings only were excluded. Of the 3740 papers retrieved, 33 were included in the final review. Factors associated with patient acceptance and use of e-SRS were extracted and synthesized. RESULTS: Most e-SRS were web based (22/33, 66%) or mobile app based (9/33, 27%). The e-SRS initial acceptance, represented by patient enrollment rates, ranged from 40% (22/55) to 100% (100/100). High e-SRS acceptance was rated by 69% (59/85) to 77.6% (337/434) of the patients after they used the system. The e-SRS use, measured by patients' response rates to questionnaires (ranging from 1596/3521, 45.33% to 92%) or system log-on rates (ranging from 4/12, 33% to 99/100, 99%), declined over time in general patterns. Few studies (n=7) reported e-SRS use beyond 6 months, with the response rates ranging from 62% (40/64) to 85.1% (541/636) and the log-on rates ranging from 63.6% (103/162) to 77% (49/64). The availability of compatible devices and technical support, interactive system features, information accessibility, privacy, questionnaire quality, patient physical/psychosocial status, and age were associated with patient acceptance and use of home-based e-SRS. CONCLUSIONS: Acceptance and use of home-based e-SRS by patients with cancer varied significantly across studies, as assessed by a variety of approaches. The lack of access to technology has remained a barrier to e-SRS adoption. Interactive system features and personalized questionnaires may increase patient engagement. More studies are needed to further understand patients' long-term use of home-based e-SRS behavior patterns to develop personalized interventions to support symptom self-management and self-reporting of patients with cancer for optimal health outcomes.
  • Authors

    Published In


  • cancer, internet, mobile phone, patient preference, patient-reported outcomes, self report, symptom, technology, telemedicine, Electronics, Humans, Mobile Applications, Neoplasms, Self Report, Self-Management, Telemedicine
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Cho Y; Zhang H; Harris MR; Gong Y; Smith EL; Jiang Y
  • Start Page

  • e24638
  • Volume

  • 23
  • Issue

  • 3