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Positive Psychology to Improve Healthy Behaviors After an Acute Coronary Syndrome (PEACE II)

This study has been completed.
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI)
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Jeff C. Huffman, MD, Massachusetts General Hospital Identifier:
First received: December 3, 2013
Last updated: November 3, 2014
Last verified: November 2014
In this proof-of-concept study, the investigators will assess the ease and usefulness of a positive psychology program in patients with acute coronary syndrome and less-than-optimal adherence to health behaviors. The investigators believe that positive psychology (a field that studies boosting positive emotions rather than simply reducing negative emotions) will help this cardiac population to be more healthy. The investigators want to determine whether this positive psychology program has the potential to be an adjunctive treatment for cardiac populations.

Condition Intervention
Acute Coronary Syndrome
Behavioral: Positive psychology intervention

Study Type: Interventional
Study Design: Intervention Model: Single Group Assignment
Masking: Open Label
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Study of a Positive Psychology Program to Improve Healthy Behaviors After an Acute Coronary Syndrome: Proof of Concept Study

Further study details as provided by Massachusetts General Hospital:

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • Rate of exercise completion [ Time Frame: 8 weeks ]
    Rate of exercise completion will be measured by the number of exercises completed per subject. There are 8 exercises in total. A good rate of completion will be defined as an average of 5 or more exercises completed per subject.

  • Ease of exercises [ Time Frame: 8 weeks ]
    Ease of exercises will be measured by a self-report 10-point Likert scale (0=not easy to complete, 10=very easy to complete). Ease will be defined as an average score of 6 or more on this scale.

  • Self-reported psychological impact of exercises [ Time Frame: 8 weeks ]
    Psychological impact of exercises will be measured by two self-reported 10-point Likert scales. One scale measures optimism after completing the exercise (0=not optimistic, 10=very optimistic), and the other scale measures helpfulness of the exercises (0=not helpful, 10=very helpful). Psychological impact will be defined as an average score of 6 or more on both of these scales.

Secondary Outcome Measures:
  • Objective psychological impact of exercises [ Time Frame: 8 weeks ]

    Object psychological impact of exercises will be measured by clinician-administered questionnaires given at baseline and again at 8 weeks. These questionnaires include:

    1. Life Orientation Test-Revised (scores range from 6-30; a high score means higher optimism)
    2. Gratitude Questionnaires-6 (scores range from 6-42; a high score means higher gratitude)
    3. Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (scores range from 0-42; a high score means higher depression and anxiety).

    Objective psychological impact will be defined as having significantly improved scores at 8 weeks as compared to scores at baseline.

  • Feasibility of step counter & pill counter devices [ Time Frame: 8 weeks ]
    Feasibility of these devices is measured by the amount of data we collect from 1) a step counter used for 2 weeks and 2) a pill counter used for 8 weeks. Feasibility will be defined as receiving data from both devices from more than 80% of subjects.

Enrollment: 23
Study Start Date: November 2013
Study Completion Date: September 2014
Primary Completion Date: September 2014 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)
Arms Assigned Interventions
Experimental: Positive psychology
Positive psychology intervention
Behavioral: Positive psychology intervention


Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years and older   (Adult, Senior)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Adult patients admitted to one of three cardiac inpatient units at Massachusetts General Hospital.
  • Primary diagnosis of acute coronary syndrome (myocardial infarction or unstable angina).
  • Less-than-optimal adherence to health behaviors. This will be defined as a mean score of less than 15 on the Medical Outcomes Study Specific Adherence Scale (scores range from 3-18, with higher scores indicating better adherence).

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Cognitive deficits, assessed via a 6-item cognitive screen used to assess appropriate participation of medically-ill patients in research studies.
  • Patients not prescribed aspirin at discharge.
  • Inability to communicate in English.
  • Inability to participate in physical activity.
  Contacts and Locations
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Please refer to this study by its identifier: NCT02004158

United States, Massachusetts
Massachusetts General Hospital
Boston, Massachusetts, United States, 02114
Sponsors and Collaborators
Massachusetts General Hospital
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI)
Principal Investigator: Jeff Huffman, MD Massachusetts General Hospital
  More Information

Responsible Party: Jeff C. Huffman, MD, Director, Cardiac Psychiatry Research Program, Massachusetts General Hospital Identifier: NCT02004158     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: 2013P001961
1R01HL113272-01A1 ( US NIH Grant/Contract Award Number )
Study First Received: December 3, 2013
Last Updated: November 3, 2014

Keywords provided by Massachusetts General Hospital:
Acute coronary syndrome
Health behavior
Mental health

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Acute Coronary Syndrome
Pathologic Processes
Myocardial Ischemia
Heart Diseases
Cardiovascular Diseases
Vascular Diseases processed this record on May 22, 2017