Charity Parkinson’s UK is trialling wearable devices to improve symptom management for sufferers of the disease.
The Parkinson’s KinetiGraph will be given to 200 sufferers across the UK, who will wear it for 10 days prior to a consultation with a doctor.
The device, worn on the wrist, records patients’ movements and medication to assess dosage levels and their effectiveness.
Steve Ford, chief executive of Parkinson’s UK, said: “Mobile health technologies provide a new opportunity to monitor and manage this debilitating movement disorder affecting an estimated 127,000 people in the UK alone.
“Tools that are able to provide more objective information about how symptoms actually affect people in their everyday lives can assist clinicians in planning more suitable medication regimes. Our aim is for people living with the condition to receive the best possible treatment that best manages the symptoms that affect their quality of life.”
The chief executive officer at Global Kinetics Corporation (GKC) – which made the devices – said he believed similar technologies will become a routine management tool in the UK.
He said: “We know this technology is highly effective at monitoring the key movement disorder symptoms of Parkinson’s, dyskinesia and bradykinesia,” he said.
“When clinicians have this information they can tailor medication regimes for optimal symptom management and ultimately enable improved quality of life. We look forward, in time, to making this important Parkinson’s KinetiGraph technology available and accessible throughout the UK.”
GKC is a privately held technology company focused on movement disorder technology. It is headquartered in Australia.
Innovations in medical wearables are increasingly entering the consumer market. One open source application, MindRDR, was released this summer. It is believed it will give those with conditions like locked-in syndrome, severe multiple sclerosis or quadriplegia the opportunity to interact with the wider world through wearable technology like Google Glass.