An upgrade to the American Parkinson Disease Association (APDA) symptom tracking app, available free to patients and caregivers, includes improvements for an easier, more detailed user experience and a Spanish version.
The mobile app, first launched last year, was developed to help people with Parkinson’s disease take a more active role in managing the disease.
Its new version, called APDA Symptom Tracker App 2.0, came in response to user feedback and the expressed need by patients to more easily and accurately track their symptoms and medications. It can be downloaded from the Apple App Store or Google Play.
Through a series of questions, users can rate how certain motor and non-motor symptoms of Parkinson’s disease are affecting them at any given time. The tool then generates a graph showing the symptoms that most affect a person’s quality of life. This record can be saved in the “My Library” section of the app, and can also be emailed directly to the patient’s care team.
The results gathered over time can help determine if certain symptoms are getting worse and which symptoms should be treated as a priority.
“As a movement disorder specialist, the more my patients tell me about their symptoms, the more I can help them. I can see how they are feeling at that time, but being able to see on a graph how they are feeling at other times since I last saw them would be extremely beneficial to me, ”Rebecca Gilbert, MD, PhD, the scientific director of APDA said in a press release.
“And now, if they also follow their medications with the app, it will help me see possible correlations between the dosage and their symptoms,” she added. “The upgraded APDA Symptom Tracker app not only benefits the patient, it helps me as a doctor. “
New features in the app include interactive medication tracking that allows patients or caregivers to enter treatments in use, their doses, and when each is taken. This helps identify opportunities for better symptom management, as dosage and timing of medications are important and can be difficult to optimally adjust in Parkinson’s disease.
Also new are reminders to enter symptom data and share this information with clinicians before appointments, which helps ensure more meaningful conversations with healthcare teams.
A “Questions for Doctor” feature offers suggested topics for discussion about symptoms and concerns, as well as preventative measures. Patients can print out the appointment questions.
The app can also send push notifications about educational programs and treatment updates, and offers a list of resources for disease information.
Finally, an app version in Spanish was created to better serve and support under-represented Parkinson’s communities.
The app upgrades were sponsored by Acadia Pharmaceuticals, whose treatments for central nervous system diseases such as Parkinson’s disease include Nuplazid.
“With the functionality of this latest release… we hope to expand the reach of this important resource for the Parkinson’s disease community,” said Ponni Subbiah, MD, senior vice president, global head of medical affairs and chief medical officer of ‘Acadia.