A Text Messaging Intervention for Dietary Behaviors for People Receiving Maintenance Hemodialysis: A Feasibility Study of KIDNEYTEXT

Jessica Dawson*, Katrina L. Campbell, Jonathan C. Craig, Allison Tong, Armando Teixeira-Pinto, Mark A. Brown, Kirsten Howard, Martin Howell, Rabia Khalid, Kamal Sud, Aravinda Thiagalingam, Clara K. Chow, Vincent W. Lee

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)
62 Downloads (Pure)


Rationale & Objective: An important component of hemodialysis management involves delivery of complex dietary recommendations. The aim of this study was to determine the feasibility of a mobile phone text-message intervention to improve dietary behavior in people undergoing hemodialysis.

Study Design: Six-month randomized feasibility study. 

Setting & Participants: Patients receiving maintenance hemodialysis across 2 health districts in Sydney, Australia.

Interventions: Participants randomized to the intervention received 3 text messages per week in addition to standard dietary care for 6 months. The usual care group received standard dietary care. 

Outcomes: The primary outcomes were feasibility measured using recruitment and retention rates, acceptability of the intervention, and adherence to dietary recommendations. Secondary exploratory outcomes included information on certain clinical parameters related to dietary management of patients receiving maintenance hemodialysis. 

Results: 130 people were recruited; 48% of eligible patients (130 of 272) consented to participate, and 88% (115 of 130) completed the study. Semistructured interviews evaluating acceptability identified 5 themes: clear and comprehensive, engaging with consistent and relevant content, maintaining attention with timely reminders, sustaining interest through ongoing care, and generic messages inadequate to prompt dietary change. There was no difference in adherence to dietary recommendations across treatment groups (odds ratio, 1.21 [95% CI, 0.55-2.72]; P = 0.6). Secondary exploratory analyses suggested reductions in dietary intake of single nutrients (potassium, phosphorus, sodium, protein), interdialytic weight gain, and phosphate binder use among intervention participants compared with participants assigned to standard care. 

Limitations: Our feasibility study was of short duration. Adherence was based on self-reported data. Generalizability to populations receiving maintenance hemodialysis outside of an urban, Australian setting is unknown. 

Conclusions: A simple mobile phone text-messaging intervention was feasible and acceptable to patients. Further investigation of the impact on patient-reported and clinical outcomes is warranted. 

Funding: Funding for the study was provided by a Sydney Medical School Foundation Grant and the Centre for Transplant and Renal Research at Westmead Hospital. Trial Registration: Registered at Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry with study number ACTRN12617001084370.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)85-95.e1
JournalAmerican Journal of Kidney Diseases
Issue number1
Early online date7 Jan 2021
Publication statusPublished - 21 Jul 2021
Externally publishedYes


Dive into the research topics of 'A Text Messaging Intervention for Dietary Behaviors for People Receiving Maintenance Hemodialysis: A Feasibility Study of KIDNEYTEXT'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this