Features  |   June 2018
Harnessing the Data in Our Pockets
Author Affiliations
  • Matthew Wecksell, M.D.
    Committee on Electronic Media and Information Technology
  • Karl A. Poterack, M.D.
    Committee on Electronic Media and Information Technology
Article Information
Cardiovascular Anesthesia / Central and Peripheral Nervous Systems / Technology / Equipment / Monitoring / Features
Features   |   June 2018
Harnessing the Data in Our Pockets
ASA Monitor 6 2018, Vol.82, 22-24.
ASA Monitor 6 2018, Vol.82, 22-24.
For decades, the collection of physiologic data has been limited to patients’ physical interactions with the health care system, because that’s where the data collection devices (e.g., blood pressure monitors, EKGs, laboratory systems, etc.) were located. The recent proliferation of small, portable computing devices has changed that paradigm, as now much physiologic data can be collected during a patient’s everyday life without significant effort. An example is the AIR Louisville study, in which researchers provided Bluetooth-enabled asthma inhalers to thousands of patients in Louisville, Kentucky.1  Such devices not only allowed researchers and clinicians to track individual inhaler usage, but population usage – which they could map against geography in the city, prevailing winds, time of day and other variables. This study led to several interventions. An area with high inhaler use and very little greenery saw many new trees planted; another industrial area with high inhaler use saw a ban on diesel trucks and traffic rerouted around the asthma hotspot. Altogether, these interventions led to an 82 percent reduction in rescue inhaler use.
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