Motivational aids for high blood pressure patients
Compliance and self-management play a central role in the therapy of high blood pressure. Any remedy that keeps the patient in line and motivates him to take his medication regularly and to influence his lifestyle in a positive and blood pressure-friendly manner is acceptable. Some of your pharmacy customers, especially men, will certainly be enthusiastic about regularly monitoring and managing their blood pressure and pulse values using an app on their smartphone.Under the keyword “blood pressure record app”, you can find a number of free and paid apps in the App Store and Google Play. But how do you choose? It’s worth taking a look at the descriptions of the apps.
Code of Ethics for Health Apps
If you don’t want to rely on your own feelings when choosing health apps, you can fall back on tests and seals of approval. The “Prevention Partner Initiative has developed a “HealthOn-App Code of Honor” for health apps that has defined criteria for trustworthy health information. There are currently 159 tested apps in the “HealthOn” database. One of them is the “Welltory” app, which in its imprint also refers to the examination by the pharmacologist Dr. Ursula Kramer from the Prevention Partner Initiative points out. I have selected Welltoryapp to present it to you here as an example.
The “Welltory” app is available in a free version and an advertising-free premium version.
“Blood pressure data” is available for both iPhone and Android smartphones. In a free version that can be used without prior registration, but contains advertisements. Anyone who is willing to pay an annual fee of $ 29.90 can order an advertising-free premium membership, which also offers further advantages. The design of the app is clear and self-explanatory. I’m testing the free version and don’t see any ads at all. The handling is explained in detail under “Help”, but it is so simple that I don’t need any help. If you have problems or questions, you will also find an email address to contact. After entering several blood pressure and pulse values, I receive clear statistics and an assessment of my values over a selected period of time, whereby the common normal values are also displayed. In addition to the measured values, I can also enter comments which will later be displayed in the table. You can do the evaluation with other people, for example your doctor, if you want graphical display of blood pressure, pulse and pulse pressure on the “Welltory” app.
In addition to blood pressure values, other vital data (weight, blood sugar level, body temperature, fluid intake and release) can also be documented. For me, it inspires confidence that the data is stored on a server and that meets the requirements of the Federal Data Protection Act.
All data that help the app user to check the transparency and quality of the statements are easy to find and understand (menu item “Info and Imprint”).
Date, time, systolic, diastolic value, pulse and comments can be easily entered on the “Welltory” app.
Heart rate measurement with camera and flash
However, the smartphone can measure the heart rate – the “Welltory Heart Rate” app can help here. “Put your finger loosely on the camera and flash” is the instruction on the display. Then follows “Measurement in progress”, you can follow the measurement on the display. A nice gimmick that definitely motivates your pulse
The “Heart Rate” app measures the pulse by placing the index finger loosely on the camera lens of the smartphone. You can (but don’t have to!) Save the measured value. The app creates processes and statistics from the values collected in this way. If I haven’t measured for a few days, I am unobtrusively reminded – with a small text message on the smartphone display.
The cell phone becomes a blood pressure monitor
Of course, there is also the right equipment that transforms the smartphone into a blood pressure monitor. The company Welltory, a blood pressure monitoring measures using modules for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. Welltorylooks like a small stand with a slot in which the connector for the Apple device is located. The lower opening of the iPhone is inserted there, i.e., docked. The connection socket for the pressure cuff is on the back of the docking station. The measurement is carried out on the upper arm, with the (free) VitaDock app, the data is saved, and diaries, statistics and monthly reports are created.
Motivation for adherence to therapy
If you are suspicious of whether these devices really measure “accurately”: What use is all the accuracy if a patient is not compliant? If the mobile and digital devices help a patient to take care of their body regularly, they will raise their health awareness in the process. He will learn to perceive unwanted deviations and changes in body functions with the help of measurement data and ideally one day feel them sensitively. All of this can help ensure that a therapy such as high blood pressure treatment, which is not necessarily understood at first, is carried out consistently.
Reminder function: take the tablet now!
The Welltoryapp also reminds you to take your medication.
If a patient wants to save their blood pressure data using an app and also be reminded of their medication intake, “Welltory” can help. In addition to the measured blood pressure values, the app can also document physical activities and symptoms. The data can also be exported to the doctor or wherever you want to export. The app states that Welltory was developed in cooperation with patients and resident doctors and that findings from research collaborations. According to the app, data protection has the highest priority. The current ratings on the net by users are very positive. Small disadvantage (which some people may not even feel): You have to register (email address and password) and before using it you have to explicitly allow access and agree that you will be contacted for participation in surveys and research studies.
Good luck with trying it out – and tell me your special tips if you feel like it!