Breaking News
November 21, 2018 - New research project to combat obesity, type 2 diabetes receives NIH funding
November 21, 2018 - Humans play key role in distribution and transmission of Bartonella bacteria
November 21, 2018 - First modeling system developed for testing age-specific human immune responses to vaccines
November 21, 2018 - FDA Alert: Gilenya (fingolimod): Drug Safety Communication
November 21, 2018 - Uric Acid Test: MedlinePlus Lab Test Information
November 21, 2018 - Researchers use genetics to predict response to antipsychotic medications
November 21, 2018 - Proposal to include the price of drugs in television ads is flawed, Stanford scholar writes
November 21, 2018 - Disrupting reproduction strategy of disease-causing parasites could help fight malaria
November 20, 2018 - ACAAI: Almost 2 Percent of Children Have Milk Allergy
November 20, 2018 - Congenital anomalies of kidney and urinary tract – Genetics Home Reference
November 20, 2018 - Can video games improve the health of older adults with schizophrenia?
November 20, 2018 - Can flicking a molecular switch restore the aging immune system’s competence?
November 20, 2018 - Restek launches new Oregon cannabis pesticide standards
November 20, 2018 - Health sector coalition urges Government to safeguard patients in future UK-EU relationship
November 20, 2018 - Study evaluates second-hand marijuana smoke exposure among children
November 20, 2018 - Scientists identify three genes responsible for recurrent molar pregnancies
November 20, 2018 - Researchers identify multisystem disorder caused by bi-allelic variants in CCDC47 gene
November 20, 2018 - Dining Out With Allergies Is Tough, But These Steps Can Help
November 20, 2018 - Breastfeeding protects infants from antibiotic-resistant bacteria
November 20, 2018 - AI matched, outperformed radiologists in screening X-rays for certain diseases | News Center
November 20, 2018 - Adolescents increasingly choose marijuana over cigarettes, alcohol
November 20, 2018 - World’s first medical imaging scanner produces diagnostic scan of the whole human body
November 20, 2018 - Cytocybernetics receives NIMH award to move into neuronal drug development
November 20, 2018 - Researchers discover new information on pathological mechanisms of Alzheimer’s disease
November 20, 2018 - ‘Unknown’ enzyme may be key to new treatment for inflammatory diseases
November 20, 2018 - Recreational drug may help people regain trust in others
November 20, 2018 - Researchers identify gene vital for post-stroke recovery
November 20, 2018 - Scientists identify novel target for neuron regeneration, functional recovery in spinal cord injury
November 20, 2018 - Potential new therapeutic approach developed for synovial sarcoma
November 20, 2018 - Skeletal imitation reveals how bones grow atom-by-atom
November 20, 2018 - Autism behaviors show unique brain network fingerprints in infants
November 20, 2018 - Location matters for inflammation clearance
November 20, 2018 - Towards finding a druggable cancer target
November 20, 2018 - Ultragenyx Announces Intent to Submit New Drug Application to U.S. FDA for UX007 for the Treatment of Long-chain Fatty Acid Oxidation Disorders in Mid-2019
November 20, 2018 - Cooling ‘brains on fire’ to treat Parkinson’s
November 20, 2018 - Less pollution could increase the average lifespan of Copenhageners by an entire year in 2040
November 20, 2018 - Abramson Cancer Center becomes the 28th member institution of National Comprehensive Cancer Network
November 20, 2018 - The plug and play time-resolved spectrometer from PicoQuant
November 20, 2018 - Breakthrough technology offers new hope to people with glaucoma, retinitis and macular degeneration
November 20, 2018 - New report highlights key focus areas to help cancer screening realize its full potential
November 20, 2018 - International experts to discuss strategies to maintain spatial orientation in old age
November 20, 2018 - Low-protein, high-carb diet may promote healthy brain ageing
November 20, 2018 - Scientists discover new inhibitor that decreases lung inflammation
November 20, 2018 - Participation project calls for relaxing research ban on germline interventions
November 20, 2018 - Karyopharm’s Selinexor Receives Fast Track Designation from FDA for the Treatment of Patients with Relapsed or Refractory Diffuse Large B-cell Lymphoma
November 20, 2018 - Arthritis by the Numbers: Book of Trusted Facts & Figures
November 20, 2018 - Drug homing method helps rethink Parkinson’s
November 20, 2018 - AHF commends the passage of global AIDS funding in the House, calls for swift approval
November 20, 2018 - The search for new psychiatric disorder treatments
November 20, 2018 - New research offers hope for simpler way to diagnose and treat cancer
November 20, 2018 - Study sheds light on the infection mechanism of influenza virus
November 20, 2018 - Storage failures of eggs and embryos gain a new perspective
November 20, 2018 - Buyers of short-term health plans: Wise or shortsighted?
November 20, 2018 - Study indicates that frogs in virus-exposed groups breed at young age
November 20, 2018 - FDA Alerts Health Care Professionals and Patients Not To Use Sterile Drug Products from Pharm D Solutions
November 20, 2018 - Asthma may contribute to childhood obesity epidemic
November 20, 2018 - Live probiotics can change existing gut flora and alter immune response
November 20, 2018 - Researchers to explore the enigmatic role of unstructured protein in regulating circadian function
November 20, 2018 - Many patients with adenomas do not receive colonoscopy within recommended time frame
November 20, 2018 - Drug used to treat PTSD does not reduce suicidal thinking, may worsen nightmares and insomnia
November 20, 2018 - In-person social contact may offer protection against depression and PTSD symptoms
November 20, 2018 - Routine HCV testing in correctional facilities can best identify and treat disease, say researchers
November 20, 2018 - Molecular DNA analysis could facilitate more accurate prognosis, treatment of aggressive brain tumors
November 20, 2018 - Breast Cancer Recurrence Rate Not Up With Autologous Fat Transfer
November 20, 2018 - Beta 2 Microglobulin (B2M) Tumor Marker Test: MedlinePlus Lab Test Information
November 20, 2018 - Could bariatric surgery make men more virile?
November 20, 2018 - Urine test to check if patients take their medications will save the NHS money, say researchers
November 20, 2018 - Study reveals impact of residual inflammatory risk on clinical outcomes after PCI
November 20, 2018 - RNAi therapy shown to alleviate preeclampsia
November 20, 2018 - Replacement of dysfunctional microglia has therapeutic potential for neurodegenerative diseases
November 20, 2018 - Forming 3D Neuronal Models of the Brain
November 20, 2018 - Shoulder ultrasounds could be used to predict diabetes
November 20, 2018 - SGLT2 Inhibitors for Diabetes Linked to Increased Risk for Amputation
November 20, 2018 - Stem cell transplant cements Arizona men’s father-son bond
November 20, 2018 - Scientists try to develop portable systems that can quickly produce biologics on demand
November 20, 2018 - Automating Data Capture and Image Analysis in Continuous Experiments
November 20, 2018 - New drug shows promise for treating people with peanut allergy
November 20, 2018 - Researchers develop novel mouse model to study immunomodulatory therapies
November 20, 2018 - “Britain must not go backward on antibiotic controls to appease US trade deals” – Jim Moseley, CEO of Red Tractor
November 20, 2018 - Widespread errors in ‘proofreading’ cause inherited blindness
Robots helped patients’ with drug and exercise routines

Robots helped patients’ with drug and exercise routines

image_pdfDownload PDFimage_print
Robots helped patients’ with drug and exercise routines
Associate Professor Elizabeth Broadbent with an iRobi robot. Credit: University of Auckland

A pilot randomised controlled trial using robots to help people at home with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease has found that the robots helped patients take their medication, carry out exercises, and keep them company.

The study, “Using robots at home to support patients with COPD: A pilot randomised controlled trial,” was recently published in the Journal of Medical Internet Research.

Lead author Associate Professor Elizabeth Broadbent of the University of Auckland’s School of Medicine, says the pilot study aimed to investigate the effectiveness of a robot delivering telehealth care to increase adherence and home rehabilitation, improve quality of life, and reduce hospital readmission compared to a standard care control group.

Hospital admissions for Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) are expensive, with the average cost per admission in New Zealand around NZ$4800. While the robots did not significantly reduce patients’ hospital admission rates, there was a trend for costs to be lower for those patients who had robots.

“The research is helpful as it suggests that a homecare robot can improve adherence to medication and increase exercise,” she says.

“But further research is needed with a larger sample size to further investigate effects on hospitalisations after improvements are made to the robots. The robots could be especially useful for patients struggling to take their medication.”

The study randomly allocated patients to one of two groups. In all, 25 people received an iRobi robot in their homes for four months in addition to standard care, while 29 received standard care alone. All participants had COPD. Other inclusion criteria included patients had to be relatively isolated and get out of the house less than four times per week, be living alone or with a spouse who was also largely housebound, geographic rural location, and aged between 16 and 90 years.

The iRobi robots were programmed to measure heart rate, breathlessness, and quality of life on a weekly basis. They reminded patients when to take medication and inhalers and recorded patient adherence several times a day; reminded patients to do their rehabilitation exercises, and displayed videos of a patient performing these at least twice weekly; provided education about COPD via video modules and pop-up messages; allowed participants to use an “I am feeling unwell” function on demand; and showed trends over time of health status and adherence on the screen to the patient.

The robot was also integrated with wifi linked Smartinhalers to monitor inhaler use. The data was sent to a secure web server that managed all robot and patient data and logged all activities, with alerts if the measurements were out of range or patients were not adherent. Specialist physiotherapists monitored the patients’ health data.

The study found that while there was no significant difference in the number of respiratory related hospitalisations between groups, the group with robots were significantly more consistent in taking their long-acting inhalers than the control group. The participants with robots also signficantly increased their rehabilitation exercise frequency compared to the control group, though there were no significant differences in quality of life.

Of the 25 patients who had the robot, 19 had favourable attitudes. They said the robot helped remind them to take their medication, they enjoyed doing the exercises with it, and their friends and family were interested in the robot, particularly young children who enjoyed visiting to see the participant as well as the robot.

They commented that the robot raised awareness for the family about when they should be taking medication and about their illness. Most people said they enjoyed having the robot because they felt it had a personality and was good company. As a consequence, many participants had given their robot a name over the time they had it.

However six people did not enjoy having the robot, three of whom returned it before the 4 month period was complete. They said they did not find the robot useful because they were very good at managing their medication and exercise on their own. The other three said they were unnerved by having the robot in their home.


Explore further:
How realistic are those robots in Star Wars?

More information:
Elizabeth Broadbent et al. Using Robots at Home to Support Patients With Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease: Pilot Randomized Controlled Trial, Journal of Medical Internet Research (2018). DOI: 10.2196/jmir.8640

Journal reference:
Journal of Medical Internet Research

Provided by:
University of Auckland

Tagged with:

About author

Related Articles