Journal: JMIR rehabilitation and assistive technologies
Physical rehabilitation is recommended after total knee arthroplasty (TKA). With the expected increase in TKA over the next few decades, it is important to find new ways of delivering cost-effective interventions. Technological interventions have been developed with this intent, but only preliminary evidence exists regarding their validity, with short follow-up times.
The demand for total hip arthroplasty (THA) is rising. In the face of rapidly increasing health care costs, ensuring widespread, cost-effective rehabilitation is a priority. Technologies allowing independent home-based rehabilitation may be the key to facilitate access, improve effectiveness, and lower costs of care.
Telemedicine applications have been increasing due to the development of new computer science technologies and of more advanced telemedical devices. Various types of telerehabilitation treatments and their relative intensities and duration have been reported.
In order to prevent pressure ulcers, wheelchair users are advised to regularly change position to redistribute or eliminate pressure between the buttocks region and the seat of the wheelchair. A power tilt-in-space wheelchair (allowing simultaneous pivoting of the seat and the backrest of the wheelchair toward the back or front) meets many clinical purposes, including pressure management, increased postural control, and pain management. However, there is a significant gap between the use of tilt as recommended by clinicians and its actual usage. A Web-based electronic health (eHealth) intervention, including a goal setting, monitoring, reminder, and feedback system of the use of power tilt-in-space wheelchairs was developed. The intervention incorporates behavior change principles to promote optimal use of tilt and to improve clinical postprocurement follow-up.
The advent of new rehabilitation and assistive technologies has led to the creation of video remote interpreting (VRI) as an accessible communication technology for deaf patients. Although there has been a rapid growth in the use of VRI technology by health care providers, there is scant published information on VRI users and their satisfaction. Current, timely data are needed to understand deaf patients' use and satisfaction with the quality of VRI technology in health care settings.
Huntington disease (HD) is an inherited genetic disorder that results in the death of brain cells. HD symptoms generally start with subtle changes in mood and mental abilities; they then degenerate progressively, ensuing a general lack of coordination and an unsteady gait, ultimately resulting in death. There is currently no cure for HD. Walking cued by an external, usually auditory, rhythm has been shown to steady gait and help with movement coordination in other neurological conditions. More recently, work with other neurological conditions has demonstrated that haptic (ie, tactile) rhythmic cues, as opposed to audio cues, offer similar improvements when walking. An added benefit is that less intrusive, more private cues are delivered by a wearable device that leaves the ears free for conversation, situation awareness, and safety. This paper presents a case study where rhythmic haptic cueing (RHC) was applied to one person with HD. The case study has two elements: the gait data we collected from our wearable devices and the comments we received from a group of highly trained expert physiotherapists and specialists in HD.
Self-management is the key recommendation for managing nonspecific low back pain (LBP). However, there are well-documented barriers to self-management; therefore, methods of facilitating adherence are required. Smartphone apps are increasingly being used to support self-management of long-term conditions such as LBP.
The “F-words in Childhood Disability” (Function, Family, Fitness, Fun, Friends, and Future) are an adaptation and an attempt to operationalize the World Health Organization’s (2001) International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF) framework. Since the paper was published (November 2011), the “F-words” have attracted global attention (>12,000 downloads, January 2018). Internationally, people have adopted the “F-words” ideas, and many families and service providers have expressed a need for more information, tools, and resources on the “F-words”.
Despite recent advances in multiple sclerosis (MS) care, many patients only infrequently access health care services, or are unable to access them easily, for reasons such as mobility restrictions, travel costs, consultation and treatment time constraints, and a lack of locally available MS expert services. Advances in mobile communications have led to the introduction of electronic health (eHealth) technologies, which are helping to improve both access to and the quality of health care services. As the Internet is now readily accessible through smart mobile devices, most people can take advantage of eHealth apps. The development of digital applications and remote communication technologies for patients with MS has increased rapidly in recent years. These apps are intended to complement traditional in-clinic approaches and can bring significant benefits to both patients with MS and health care providers (HCPs). For patients, such eHealth apps have been shown to improve outcomes and increase access to care, disease information, and support. These apps also help patients to participate actively in self-management, for example, by tracking adherence to treatment, changes in bladder and bowel habits, and activity and mood. For HCPs, MS eHealth solutions can simplify the multidisciplinary approaches needed to tailor MS management strategies to individual patients; facilitate remote monitoring of patient symptoms, adverse events, and outcomes; enable the efficient use of limited resources and clinic time; and potentially allow more timely intervention than is possible with scheduled face-to-face visits. These benefits are important because MS is a long-term, multifaceted chronic condition that requires ongoing monitoring, assessment, and management. We identified in the literature 28 eHealth solutions for patients with MS that fall within the four categories of screening and assessment, disease monitoring and self-management, treatment and rehabilitation, and advice and education. We review each solution, focusing on any clinical evidence supporting their use from prospective trials (including ASSESS MS, Deprexis, MSdialog, and the Multiple Sclerosis Performance Test) and consider the opportunities, barriers to adoption, and potential pitfalls of eHealth technologies in routine health care.
Rehospitalization rates resulting from secondary conditions in persons with spinal cord injuries (SCI) are high. Self-management programs for many chronic conditions have been associated with decreases in hospital readmissions. However, in the SCI community, evidence suggests that satisfaction with traditional self-management programs is low. Users with SCI have indicated preference for programs that are online (rather than in-person), that target SCI-specific concerns, and are led by peers with SCI. There is currently no program with all of these features, which addresses self-management of secondary conditions after SCI.