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AI-powered digital treatment can aid COPD treatment: Study

The answer, according to digital therapeutics pioneer Kaia Health, is potentially. Kaia Health are launching a new feasibility study to find out. If successful, this study could inform healthcare policies worldwide.

Kaia Health have been developing which uses innovative artificial intelligence based motion tracking technology to address various health challenges. The next step with such applications is to assess how its digital therapeutic treatment can assist with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) in relation to Japan’s ageing population. The science company had previous run a similar study in Germany, where there was a decrease in COPD associated symptoms.

COPD refers to a form of obstructive lung disease characterized by long-term breathing problems and poor airflow. Primary symptoms include shortness of breath and cough together with sputum production. COPD is referred to as a progressive disease, indicating that it tends to worsen over time. Based on World Health Organisation data, 64 million people worldwide have been diagnosed with COPD and, at current rates of reporting, COPD is set to be the third leading cause of death worldwide by 2030.

The reason for focusing on Japan is because COPD is a significant health problem and it is placing a socioeconomic burden on the health system. An earlier assessment of the Kaia Health COPD app published in the International Journal of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, indicates that Kaia Health’s COPD app can lower COPD symptoms (see: “Digitalizing multidisciplinary pulmonary rehabilitation in COPD with a smartphone application: an international observational pilot study”).

The results of the study showed that patients who undertook twenty therapy days with the Kaia COPD app demonstrated a clinically significant benefit based on the Health-Related Quality of Life score (HRQOL), which is an individual’s or a group’s perceived physical and mental health, assessed over time.

The Kaia Health COPD app looks at both the physical and psychological factors of the disease, offering services like video-enabled physiotherapy designed to help users to build muscle and promote a healthy cardiovascular system. The app also comes with a training algorithm based on each patient’s disease profile.

According to Konstantin Mehl, the CEO of Kaia Health: “Conventional COPD treatment is expensive and resource-intense, particularly in developed countries…Our AI-powered COPD treatment is effective, widely accessible and can be used at home. This empowers patients to take control and self-manage their COPD with evidenced-based, non-pharmacological, affordable alternatives to it.”

Written By

Dr. Tim Sandle is Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large for science news. Tim specializes in science, technology, environmental, and health journalism. He is additionally a practising microbiologist; and an author. He is also interested in history, politics and current affairs.

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