The role of mobile apps in allergic respiratory diseases: An italian multicentre survey report

The Mobile Apps Multicenter Italian Study Group

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

We performed a multicentre survey about the role of mobile apps in allergic respiratory diseases. The main objective was to investigate the current use and usefulness of mobile phone apps in the management of allergic respiratory disease. An original questionnaire including 12 multiple-choice questions was administered to 360 participants (153 male and 207 female subjects). Of notice, 290 subjects owned a smartphone, 120 a personal computer and 68 a tablet (multiple answers were possible). 123 subjects reported to be regular mobile-apps users, 209 were occasional users and 76 has never downloaded an app. Indeed, 259 subjects have never dealt with a medical or healthcare app, with only 8 subjects answering to often take advantage of such supportive tools. Data were even more discouraging when asking whether subjects had ever downloaded an app directly related to their own medical condition (allergy, asthma and rhinitis). 87.2% provided a negative answer. Among the few individuals who reported a previous experience with allergy/asthma apps only 2 subjects reported to regularly use the apps they had downloaded, even after months. The majority of subjects believed the apps would provide a relevant support, but only 25/360 participants found that the apps are “truly helpful”, while 44 considered them of “help but not essential”. Our data seem to show that the apps in the medical field, especially for allergic respiratory diseases, are welcome by patients, but their continued use and utility wane with the passage of time from the date of the download. In the future it will therefore be important to focus on the quality of the apps themselves and on the careful selection of the most suitable patients to use them. Finally, it will be important to make use of the fundamental contribution of healthcare professionals for the development of the apps.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)268-272
Number of pages5
JournalEuropean Annals of Allergy and Clinical Immunology
Volume50
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1 2018

Keywords

  • Allergic rhinitis
  • Asthma
  • E-Health
  • M-Health
  • Mobile apps

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy

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