Currently submitted to: JMIR mHealth and uHealth
Date Submitted: Mar 5, 2020
(closed for review but you can still tweet)
A smartphone app to self-monitor nausea during chemotherapy of childhood cancer
Nausea and vomiting are common and distressing side effects for children receiving chemotherapy. Limited evidence directs antiemetic recommendations, and prospective and reliable evaluation of antiemetic efficacy is needed. Smartphone applications (apps) can effortlessly and precisely collect real-time patient-reported outcomes.
We developed a smartphone app to monitor nausea and vomiting episodes in paediatric cancer patients aged 0-18 years.
Multidisciplinary group discussions and several rounds of patient feedback and modification were conducted. We translated the validated “Paediatric Nausea Assessment Tool” to assess nausea severity in children aged 4-18 years. The child’s term for nausea is interactively incorporated in the nausea severity question, which is expressed with four illustrative faces. Parent reported outcomes were used for children aged 0-3 years. Reminders are sent to ensure high response rates.
The app was evaluated prospectively in 20 patients (aged 2-17 years) during 60 chemotherapy cycles. The participants expressed that the app was user-friendly, intuitive, and that time spent on data entry was fair. The response rates were on average 92%, 93% and 80%, respectively, the day before, the first day, and the next four days after chemotherapy. Researchers and clinicians can get an overview of the patient’s chemotherapy dates and responses in a secure and encrypted homepage. Data can be downloaded for further analysis.
The user-friendly app can facilitate future paediatric antiemetic trials and refine antiemetic treatment during chemotherapy. Clinical Trial: The parents provided informed consent for the study. The study was approved by the Danish Data Protection Agency (RH-2016-219, I-Suite: 04804) and the Danish National Research Ethics Committee (H-18020267). The app was approved by the regulatory authorities in CIMT (Center for It, Medico og Telefoni) in the Capital Region of Denmark.