This week on the Health Tech Weekly Podcast I look at a novel mobile app that could help chronic pain patients manage their suffering. Developers and health care professionals at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston are in the process of testing a new smartphone app that they hope will help manage chronic pain in patients and help their healthcare providers help them.
Millions of Americans deal with chronic pain from a variety of causes each day. The costs to the patients and the healthcare system tops six hundred billion dollars a year. The app hopes to help patients communicate with their doctors throughout the day between appointments creating a record of their pain level that can then be discussed on the next meeting.
Patients can document interventions and treatments that are working or not. With the help of their doctors or nurse practitioners, they can then work to figuring out an effective treatment plan that is customized for them. The app works by periodically prompting the patient to input their pain levels now and throughout the day. They also enter info about their mood and basic activities like exercise or walking.
Doctors hope that this customized treatment modality will better manage the pain for patients, save time and money for the healthcare system and improve communication between patients and their healthcare team. I’ll keep reporting on this and other health management apps as they come along so you know what new health tech is available for you and your own health management.
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