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Archive for the ‘health 2.0’ Category

AsthmaMD screenshot

AsthmaMD es un claro ejemplo de como los dispositivos móviles pueden ayudar en las tareas de personalización de la medicina y medicina basada en la evidencia.

La idea es muy sencilla, una aplicación en el iPhone en la que el paciente de asma puede ir guardando su estado y la medicación que toma. Una vez recogida la información se puede transmitir de forma sencilla al centro médico.

Medical doctor and researcher Sam Pejham, UCSF Medical School Clinical Faculty and Director of Tri-Valley Pediatrics is the creator of the new iPhone app. The free application allows users to easily and quickly log their asthma activity, their medications, causes of their asthma in the form of a diary. Users may share the diary and a color graph chart of their asthma activities with their physicians to be included in their medical records.

¿Qué beneficios se pueden obtener de todo esto?

Para el paciente: en  primer lugar  llevar un control sobre su propia enfermedad. Esto le ayudará no solo a conocerse mejor, sino que también le facilita la tarea de comunicarse de forma más sencilla, rápida y eficaz, cuando por ejemplo, visita a su especialista y le quiera contar como ha sido su evolución en los últimos meses.

Para los especialistas: si el paciente va registrando toda información acerca de su estado, de la medicación que toma, etc en su teléfono móvil, esta información se puede transmitir muy fácilmente a cualquier ordenador, de forma que el especialista podría ir siguiendo la evolución de su paciente de forma telemática o utilizar herramientas de ayuda a la decisión que detecten patrones o calculen estadísticas que le faciliten la toma de decisiones. De esta forma un médico dispone de información mucho más completa y detallada en lugar de simplemente esperar que el paciente llege a la consulta y le intente contar  lo que le ha pasado en los últimos 3 meses.

Para la sociedad: avance en la recopilación de una información que hasta ahora era imposible de obtener. Multitud de datos acerca de pacientes. Lo realmente interesante es que a partir de esa información se obtienen relaciones como la evolución de una enfermedad en una determinada región o en una determinada estación del año y se intenta encontrar una relación, por ejemplo entre  el tipo de plantas de la zona, a la humedad, a la comida y la efectividad de un determinado medicamento.  Obteniendo de esta forma un conocimiento mucho más completo y dificil de alcanzar por métodos empíricos. O por poner otro ejemplo, reunir información  acerca de la efectividad de un determinado medicamento sobre los pacientes de una determinada región.

Vía: TechChunch, AsthmaMD Helps Asthma Sufferers, Gathers Aggregate Research Data

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The yealthlife team has been lagging on updating its blog, we apologize to our followers. There’s a reason for this though, the yealthlife team works in a project of the 7th Framework Programme of the European Comission, and we just got done, a little over a week ago, with a technical review at Clinica Universitaria de Navarra, a well known clinic in Pamplona, Spain.

The project (www.perform-project.com) is about developing a comprehensive platform for the management of Parkinson’s disease patients. This includes a set of wearable motion sensors and a wide range of algorithms. The latter are used to identify and assess the severity of motor symptoms, profile the symptom’s patterns of appearance in each patient, keep track of the evolution of the disease and suggest better treatment regimes based on all this information and on the medication intake schedule of each patient.

One of the areas of the Information Society Technologies, one of the areas in which the European Commission invests heavily, consists in optimizing patient care processes for chronic diseases that are expensive to manage through the development of IT systems capable of constantly monitoring the status of the patient, generating alerts and providing advice to physicians on how to improve treatments.

Investing in optimizing healthcare related processes by taking advantage of Information Technologies seems to be a requirement for the long term sustainability of most of today’s healthcare systems. Both the cost and the number of people affected by chronic diseases have been, and will continue to be on the rise, for a long time.

Yealthlife comes into play in a similar niche, as it is similar to PERFORM in the way that both consist on integrating a technological platform (sensors, smart software, communications) to optimize care and improve quality of life for patients. The main difference is that PERFORM has been mainly envisioned as a R&D project, while yealthlife has been thought as going into the market right away, a more pragmatic approach. It’s also a big difference that PERFORM is limited to the frame of motor neurodegenerative diseases (i.e. Parkinson’s, ALS) while yealthlife is a comprehensive platform that addresses a variety sensors, a wide range of chronic diseases and the lifestyle of the user in general, even if he or she is not ill.

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Hablando sobre el futuro de la salud y de como esta debe actualizase y modernizarse para satisfacer las nuevas necesidades de los usuarios,  nos llega este artículo de Newsweek en donde se explica de manera clara cuales deben ser los siguientes pasos para que un servicio de medicina 1.0  evolucione a la medicina 2.0
Según Newsweek los requisitos para llegar a ofrecer un servicio de medicina 2.0 son las 4P: Personalización, Predictabilidad, Prevención y Participación.
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Medicine will begin to get more predictive and personalized (the first two aspects of P4 medicine) over the next five to 10 years. First, doctors will be able to sequence the genome of each patient, which together with other data will yield useful predictions about his or her future health; it will be able to tell you, for example, that you have a 30 percent chance of developing ovarian cancer before age 30. Second, a biannual assessment of your blood will make it possible to get an update on the current state of your health for each of your 50 or so organ systems. These steps will place the focus of medicine on individual patients and on assessing the impact that genes and their interactions with the environment have in determining health or disease.

In preventive medicine (the third P), researchers will use systems medicine to develop drugs that help prevent disease. If, say, you have a 50 percent chance of developing prostate cancer by the time you’re 50, you may be able to start taking a drug when you’re 30 that would reduce substantially reduce that probability. In the next 10 to 20 years the focus of health care will shift from dealing with disease to maintaining wellness.

Participatory medicine acknowledges the unparalleled opportunities that patients will have to take control of their health care. To participate effectively, though, they will have to be educated as to the basic principles of P4 medicine. New companies that can analyze human genome variation, like 23andMe and Navigenics, are already planning to provide patients with genetic information that may be useful in modifying their behavior to avoid future health problems. In the future, patients will need not just genetic data but insight into how the environment is turning genes on and off to cause disease—just as smoking often causes lung cancer and exposure to sunlight can cause skin cancer.

 

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