Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:
Appears in Collections:Faculty of Health Sciences and Sport Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: Pilot randomised controlled trial of Weight Watchers® referral with or without dietitian-led group support for weight loss in women treated for breast cancer: the BRIGHT (BReast cancer weIGHT loss) trial
Author(s): Newlands, Rumana S N
Ntessalen, Maria
Clark, Julia
Fielding, Shona
Hoddinott, Pat
Heys, Steven D
McNeill, Geraldine
Craig, Leone C A
Keywords: Breast cancer
weight loss
Weight Watchers
group support
pilot trial
Issue Date: 13-Feb-2019
Date Deposited: 28-Jan-2019
Citation: Newlands RSN, Ntessalen M, Clark J, Fielding S, Hoddinott P, Heys SD, McNeill G & Craig LCA (2019) Pilot randomised controlled trial of Weight Watchers® referral with or without dietitian-led group support for weight loss in women treated for breast cancer: the BRIGHT (BReast cancer weIGHT loss) trial. Pilot and Feasibility Studies, 5, Art. No.: 24.
Abstract: Background Being overweight or obese following breast cancer diagnosis can increase cancer recurrence and mortality so effective interventions for weight loss in this group could enhance survival. A pilot randomised controlled trial was conducted to assess whether a weight loss programme comprising generic Weight Watchers® referral offered to women treated for breast cancer with or without additional breast cancer-tailored dietetic support is feasible and shows promise for improving weight and quality of life (QoL). Methods Participants were randomly allocated to three groups: Weight Watchers® referral (for 12 sessions of meetings & digital tools) plus five breast cancer-tailored dietitian led group support sessions (WW Plus: n=14); Weight Watchers® referral only (WW: n=16) or Control (Weight Watchers® referral after 3 months, n=15). Feasibility was assessed based on retention rate, recruitment and randomisation process, meeting attendance, suitability of the setting and outcome measurement tools, unintended consequences, cost, and observations of the dietetic sessions. Outcomes were measured at 0, 3 (‘trial exit’) and 12 months post intervention. Results The response rate to the invitation was 43% (140/327) of whom 58 were eligible and 45 (median age 61.0y; body mass index 30.2kg/m2) were randomised. Data from 38 (84%) and 30 (67%) participants were available at trial exit and 12 months respectively. Feasibility issues included slow recruitment process, lack of blinding throughout, weighing scales not measuring >150 kg, lack of clear instructions for completing QoL questionnaire, and workload and time pressures in delivering dietetic sessions. Participants had good attendance rate at group meetings and no serious unintended consequences were reported. WW Plus was most expensive to run. Mean (95% CI) weight change at trial exit was -3.67kg (-5.67, -2.07) in WW Plus; -6.03kg (-7.61, -4.44) in WW group and +0.19kg (-1.45, +1.83) in Control group. About 40% of the WW Plus, 64% of the WW group and 56% of the Control group lost ≥5% of their baseline weight by 12 months. All groups showed promise for improving QoL at trial exit but only the WW group maintained significant improvements from baseline at 12 months. Conclusions The trial procedures were feasible, with some modifications. This pilot trial indicates the benefits of providing free WW vouchers for weight loss maintenance and improving QoL but provided no evidence that including additional dietetic support would add any extra value. Further research with WW with long term follow-up should be undertaken to assess weight loss sustainability 1 and benefit on health outcomes in this patient group.
DOI Link: 10.1186/s40814-019-0405-x
Rights: © The Author(s). 2019 This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.
Licence URL(s):

Files in This Item:
File Description SizeFormat 
s40814-019-0405-x.pdfFulltext - Published Version880.35 kBAdobe PDFView/Open

This item is protected by original copyright

A file in this item is licensed under a Creative Commons License Creative Commons

Items in the Repository are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.

The metadata of the records in the Repository are available under the CC0 public domain dedication: No Rights Reserved

If you believe that any material held in STORRE infringes copyright, please contact providing details and we will remove the Work from public display in STORRE and investigate your claim.