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Here Are The Five New ResearchKit Apps And What They Do

Want to participate in groundbreaking medical research? There are five new apps for that.

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Apple launched a new set of apps today that will change the way we collect health data and provide patients with instant feedback.

Apple / Via

These apps are the first ones available in the upcoming ResearchKit an open source platform launching next month that allows doctors and scientists to create their own apps for clinical studies. They'll give researchers an unprecedented access to huge amounts of data, plus they'll give users important feedback about their health and symptoms.

Almost anyone with the apps can participate in groundbreaking medical research.


This means huge improvements in how we typically recruit for and carry out these studies. Think: larger sample sizes, subjective data, the ability to collect data constantly, and the benefit of instant feedback for the participant.

Of course, users will have to explicitly provide consent and meet the eligibility requirements for each of these studies, and they'll have to allow the apps to access information provided through phone sensors, an Apple Watch, or the Health app. Users can also decide how their data is shared through each one.

SO, here are the apps available today (all free from the iTunes store):

1. Asthma Health

Asthma Health / Via

Who It's For: Anyone 18 or older who has been diagnosed with asthma by a doctor and is currently taking medication for it. They must be a non-smoker with no other lung condition or congestive heart failure. U.S. residents only.

What It Is: The app was developed by researchers at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai and Weill Cornell Medical College and allows you to participate in the Asthma Mobile Health Study.

What It Does: Gives you reminders about local air quality and your medications. Helps you track your asthma symptoms, how often you use your controller or rescue inhaler, your triggers, peak flow, steps taken (through the Health app), and any medical visits. It also teaches you about inhaler technique and asthma management tips.

Get it here.


2. mPower

mPower / Via

Who It's For: Anyone over 18 with or without Parkinson's disease. U.S. residents only.

What It Is: The nonprofit Sage Bionetworks collaborated with the University of Rochester to invite iPhone users to be a part of the largest and most comprehensive Parkinson's study.

What It Does: The app includes surveys and tasks using your phone's sensors to measure things like dexterity, gait, balance, and voice. For those with Parkinson's disease, this can help you track symptoms and progression. For those without Parkinson's, you'll be contributing control data to a hugely important study.

Get it here.

3. Share The Journey

Share the Journey / Via

Who It's For: Women between the ages of 18 and 80 with or without a history of breast cancer. U.S. residents only.

What It Is: The nonprofit Sage Bionetworks teamed up with researchers to develop an app which will collect data for a clinical study and help women manage and understand symptoms that emerge after breast cancer treatment.

What It Does: The app tracks five common symptoms that occur after breast cancer treatment: fatigue, mood and cognitive changes, sleep disturbances, and changes in exercise. Users can track these symptoms through surveys and phone sensor data (with the Health app), review trends, and provide additional info to researchers. They can also learn more about treatment and managing these symptoms. For women without a history of cancer, you'll be providing important control data for the study.

Get it here.

4. MyHeart Counts

MyHeart Counts / Via

Who It's For: Anyone 18 and older. U.S. residents only.

What It Is: An app developed by Stanford Medicine to collect data for a study on heart health.

What It Does: Helps you track your physical activity, fitness level, and cardiovascular risk using your phone's sensors or an Apple Watch. It also prompts you to input your cholesterol and blood pressure results to assess your cardiovascular disease risk and your "heart age." It also teaches you about your heart health, risk factors, and how to lower your risk of heart disease and stroke.

Get it here.

5. GlucoSuccess

GlucoSuccess / Via

Who It's For: Anyone 18 or older who has either pre-diabetes or type 2 diabetes. U.S. residents only.

What It Is: Researchers at the Massachusetts General Hospital developed the app to study diabetes and help people manage their condition.

What It Does: Helps you track your physical activity, diet, blood glucose measurements, weight, waist size, and medications. More specifically, it allows you to track how your diet and activity levels affect your blood glucose measurements.

Get it here.

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