Technological Support for Parkinson’s Disease Patients’ Self-Care

Thesis event information

Date and time of the thesis defence

Place of the thesis defence

L10, Linnanmaa

Topic of the dissertation

Technological Support for Parkinson’s Disease Patients’ Self-Care

Doctoral candidate

Master of Science Elina Kuosmanen

Faculty and unit

University of Oulu Graduate School, Faculty of Information Technology and Electrical Engineering, The Center for Ubiquitous Computing

Subject of study

Computer Science

Opponent

Professor Cecilia Mascolo, University of Cambridge

Custos

Docent Denzil Ferreira, University of Oulu

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Technological Support for Parkinson’s Disease Patients’ Self-Care

Parkinson’s disease (PD) is an incurable neurodegenerative disorder. PD manifests various symptoms, such as tremors, stiffness and slowness, and the symptoms impact have a significant impact on patients’ life. Self-care is an essential part of living with a chronic condition. Self-care refers to all actions that aim to minimise the disease’s impact on daily life. The objective of this thesis was to create new applications for supporting PD self-care.

First, we implemented a mobile application, STOP, to enable patients’ self-assessment and aid in medication adherence. We demonstrate that accelerometer data from STOP are useful for tremor and medication effect detection. We found the drawing performance in digital drawing tasks differed with PD patients and age matching controls. We found PD patients receptive to digital tools to track their medication intake and symptoms. The possibility of sharing the data with medical personnel to improve and assist their own care would motivate the use of digital tools.

As a second application, we collected and assessed community-contributed self-care techniques, and established and evaluated an open online repository, the PDCareBox, for PD self-care practice data. The peer-provided data is actionable and understandable, and in a daily life context, supplementing clinical information of PD. The PDCareBox provides an organised way to share and discover the knowledge gained by the experience of living with PD.
Last updated: 1.8.2022