At Vivante, we’re the digestive health experts. We live for this stuff. Here’s a short summary of another academic article our gut health nerds found interesting…
Managing IBD with the help of an app is not a far-fetched idea. As an illness that commonly affects young adults in their 20’s and 30’s, most IBD patients are adaptable, tech savvy, and more likely to be involved in their own healthcare decisions.
If it has the ability to keep a food diary, track personal goals, and measure progress over time, an app might be the personal assistant people with IBD have been waiting for. But can an app really make a meaningful health difference? In short, yes.
A group of researchers looked at the value of tech in IBD management. By examining smartphone apps that serve as two-way communication channels between patients and their healthcare providers, they were able to measure usefulness and impact.
The apps collected patient-reported outcomes like symptoms, quality of life, and medication use. They even tracked hospitalization episodes. The data was then used to give patients individualized tips for areas of improvement.
The results were pretty conclusive. In addition to improving patient care and quality of life, IBD apps had plenty of benefits:
- They were personalized.
- They were inexpensive.
- They could adapt to user needs.
In real-time, they could:
- monitor progress
- help with goal-setting
- jump-start discussions with doctors
Is it worth getting an app for IBD? According to this study, yes. But a word of caution: Not all smartphone apps are created equal. The best type of app is one that provides a two-way channel between user and a care team, offers the functionality mentioned above (e.g., food diary, progress tracking, medication logs), and is easy to use.
Might we suggest the GIThrive app from Vivante Health? 😉
Original article: What’s app? Electronic health technology in inflammatory bowel disease