Effectiveness of strategies for recruiting overweight and obese Generation Y women to a clinical weight management trial

Griffin, Hayley J.; O'Connor, Helen T.; Rooney, Kieron B.; Steinbeck, Katharine S.
June 2013
Asia Pacific Journal of Clinical Nutrition;Jun2013, Vol. 22 Issue 2, p235
Academic Journal
Aim: Limited research in young overweight and obese women indicates that they are difficult to recruit to weight management trials, with attrition higher and weight loss success lower than middle to older age participants. This study aimed to evaluate the effectiveness of different recruitment strategies for a clinical weight loss trial in overweight and obese Generation Y women. Methods: Overweight and obese (BMI ≥27.5 kg/m-2 women aged 18-25 years (n=70) were required for a 12 month clinical weight management trial including diet, exercise and behaviour modification. Contact with researchers and eventual recruitment are reported for the various strategies employed to engage participants. Data reported as % or mean ±SE. Results: Recruitment was challenging with only 50 of the total 70 participants recruited within the scheduled time frame (24 months). Just over one quarter (27%) of volunteers assessed were recruited. Flyers posted around local tertiary education campuses were the most successful method, yielding 36% of included participants. This was followed by advertisements on the local area health service intranet (26%) and in local and metropolitan newspapers (16%). Conclusions: Recruitment of overweight and obese Generation Y women for a clinical weight loss trial was difficult. Multiple strategies targeted at this age and gender group were required. Less rigorous selection criteria and reduced face-to-face intervention time may improve recruitment and retention rates into clinical trials for this age group.


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