Journal of American College Health Publishes Results of NIAAA-funded study: myStudentBody® Alcohol

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New peer-reviewed article shows myStudentBody® Alcohol promotes responsible drinking, delivers positive results on college campuses.

(myStudentBody.com – Inflexxion, Inc.) On campuses across the United States, the consequences of student drinking include alcohol-related health problems, sexual and physical assault, vandalism, unintentional injuries, and academic issues. Unfortunately, traditional methods and interventions often occur after the damage has been done, while students who experience minor issues and consequences may slip through the cracks completely. Fortunately, evidence based online programs, such as myStudentBody® Alcohol, have emerged in recent years to meet the challenges of this increasing national concern.

Research shows that college students prefer self-directed methods to address alcohol misuse. But does online technology-transfer really offer an effective means of prevention and intervention for college students? Behavioral scientists at Inflexxion, Inc. have long held the answer – now the scientific community and college health professionals are beginning to echo a resounding “yes.”

According to findings from a groundbreaking single-blind randomized controlled study published in the May/June issue of the Journal of American College Health, myStudentBody® Alcohol’s interactive and tailored approach demonstrated a greater impact on students' drinking behavior than a text-based alcohol education website. In a clinical trial funded by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), students who used myStudentBody® Alcohol reported significant decreases in alcohol use as compared to control group participants who received only text-based materials.

The clinical trial involved 265 students aged 18 to 24 from five colleges and universities. All participants fulfilled the criteria of "binge drinking" within the previous week. Overall, the number of binge drinking episodes, typical drinking amounts and frequency, and the quantity of alcohol consumed on special occasions all decreased over the study period. In addition, the study demonstrates significant results for three important subgroups of the college population: females, persistent heavy drinkers, and low-motivation drinkers (those less likely to seek out services through other means).

  • Females who used myStudentBody® Alcohol significantly reduced their peak and total consumption during special occasions and reported significantly fewer negative consequences related to drinking, than females in the control group.

  • Persistent heavy drinkers using myStudentBody® Alcohol showed a rapid decrease in average and peak consumption and composite alcohol scores.
  • Low-motivation students who used myStudentBody® Alcohol reduced the number of drinks consumed per day significantly faster than those in the control group.

Funded through a competitive grant award from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, myStudentBody® Alcohol was developed and scientifically tested for efficacy and user satisfaction prior to its commercial release in 2002. At the core of each component of the myStudentBody® Comprehensive College Health Suite, a self-administered risk assessment functions as a brief intervention or screening tool, providing tailored motivational feedback and website personalization based on specific areas of risk.

Additional resources: Campus health professionals and school administrators are encouraged to visit the following URL for additional information: http://www.myStudentBody.com/ABOUT/findoutmore.asp

Chiauzzi, E., Green, T.C., Lord, S., Thum, C., & Goldstein, M. (2005). My Student Body: A high risk drinking prevention website for college students. Journal of American College Health 53: 263-274.

Walters ST, Hester RK, Chiauzzi E, Miller E (2005) Demon Rum: High-Tech Solutions to an Age-Old Problem. J Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research 29: 270-277.

Walters, S., Miller, E., & Chiauzzi, E. (in press). Getting wired for wellness: e-interventions for addressing college drinking. Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment.

About the myStudentBody® Comprehensive College Health Suite:

Combining the efforts of behavioral scientists, multimedia designers and educators, each component of the myStudentBody® Comprehensive College Health Suite has been developed by a top-notch team through a series of competitive grant awards from the National Institutes of Health. Working together with college students and nationally renowned experts, the myStudentBody® suite tackles the most relevant health-related issues on college campuses today. Current subscription offerings include: myStudentBody® Alcohol, myStudentBody® STDs, and myStudentBody® Tobacco. A pre-release version of myStudentBody® Stress is available for subscriptions beginning in fall 2005.

myStudentBody® Data Reports companion websites offer fully customizable reports and real-time aggregate data that help college administrators and campus professionals plan successful health initiatives and monitor program outcomes. Additional websites covering nutrition, and drugs are on the myStudentBody® horizon for release throughout the academic year. For more information, please visit: http://www.myStudentBody.com

About Inflexxion, Inc.

Inflexxion, Inc. [http://www.inflexxion.com is a scientifically based, multimedia company specializing in healthcare solutions. Using interactive multimedia and Internet technologies that guarantee user involvement, Inflexxion® brings efficiencies and new treatment options to all aspects of health. The company draws upon the unique skills of psychologists, multimedia designers, scientists and educators to develop products characterized by their ability to engage the user, change behaviors, and take advantage of multimedia technologies. Inflexxion® Inc. is based in Newton, Mass.

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Dr. Sarah Lord