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Exploring DTx in Cardiovascular Disease via Fitterfly’s Expert Discussion

Published on: Apr 22, 2024
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Exploring DTx in Cardiovascular Disease via Fitterfly’s Expert Discussion
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Digital therapeutics (DTx) is emerging as an innovative tool for delivering evidence-based therapeutic interventions for various medical conditions, including cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, gastrointestinal issues, neurological conditions, cancer, addiction, and genitourinary issues. It delivers high-quality software programs to prevent, manage, or treat these conditions.

To explore the potential of DTx in cardiovascular disease management, Fitterfly hosted a captivating webinar led by Dr Vivek Baliga [MBBS MRCP PhD MBA PGDLM, Consultant Physician and Cardiologist; Director, Baliga Diagnostics] and Dr Manthan Mehta (Program Head for Hypertension & CV Health, Fitterfly). We bring about the focal points of this webinar, in case you missed the event.

Speakers at Fitterfly’s Webinar

Fig 1: Speakers at the Fitterfly’s Webinar

Global Burden of Cardiovascular Disease

The American College of Cardiology has come out with shocking details in its latest 2023 report, stating that global cardiovascular disease-related mortality has increased from 12.4 million in 1990 to 19.8 million in 2022. Moreover, Eastern European countries demonstrate the maximum age-standardised total CVD deaths at 553 deaths per 100,000, whereas Australia registered the minimum age-standardised total CVD mortality at 122.5 deaths per 100,000 individuals. The report further pointed out that ischemic heart disease is the leading cause of cardiovascular disease mortality at 108.8 deaths per 100,000 people.

Role of DTx in Cardiovascular Disease Management

Sepah et al. pioneered the concept of “digital therapeutics” in their peer-reviewed publication and formally defined it as “evidence-based behavioral treatments delivered online that can increase accessibility and effectiveness of healthcare.” Physicians may prescribe DTx interventions independently or in combination with medications, devices, or other therapies to optimise patient care and health outcomes.

The role of digital therapeutics in cardiovascular diseases (CVD) is multifaceted, as it offers personalised interventions tailored to individual patient needs and real-time data collection and analysis to facilitate remote monitoring. These interventions are expected to control blood pressure, manage dyslipidemia, and reduce atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease risk. They prompt healthcare professionals to mediate promptly when necessary, potentially reducing the risk of cardiovascular events and improving outcomes.

AHA’s Life’s Essential 8 Checklist

The American Heart Association recommends 8 crucial measures for improving and maintaining cardiovascular health. They are:

  • Heart-Healthy Food Consumption
  • Exercising Daily
  • Quitting Tobacco
  • Getting Quality Sleep
  • Maintaining BMI within the Optimal Limit
  • Managing Cholesterol
  • Controlling Blood Sugar
  • Controlling Blood Pressure

Dr Baliga pointed out that it is crucial to implement these 8 significant checklists according to the Indian perspective, as the American lifestyle is vastly different from Indian living conditions. For example, according to American health statistics, the optimal BMI ranges between 18.5 kg/m2 and 24.9 kg/m2. However, in the Indian scenario, a BMI level above 23 kg/m2 is considered obese.

Scope of DTx in Improving Heart Patient Outcomes

DTx holds a promising role in improving cardiac patient outcomes by leveraging technology to deliver personalised and effective interventions. DTx solutions facilitate remote patient monitoring, reducing the need for frequent hospital visits while ensuring continuous care and early detection of complications.

A review by Xiu Zhang et al. on the efficiency and safety of DTx‐based cardiac rehabilitation among heart failure patients pointed out that adherence to treatment, exercise capacity and quality of life in heart failure patients improved significantly following the program. Researchers shortlisted 5 studies for the review work, including 1119 candidates with a mean age of 66.37 years.

Another study by Balbir Singh et al. on the needs and benefits of DTx for heart failure management in India indicated that it can help in the seamless monitoring of patient vitals and can intervene to assist and guide patients during emergencies. DTx can even improve patients’ QOL and reduce their caregivers’ stress and anxiety. 

Takeaways from the Fitterfly Webinar

Finally, it would be right to conclude that the integration of DTx into traditional cardiovascular disease management is reshaping global healthcare strategies. With the global burden of heart disease rising exponentially, DTx plays a pivotal role in early complication detection, reducing hospitalisations, and lowering mortality rates.

Dr Vivek Baliga also echoed this view and advocated extensive use of DTx in heart disease management. By leveraging advanced software for remote monitoring and patient inquiries between clinical visits, physicians can focus on essential treatment strategies. Explore the transformative impact of DTx on cardiovascular care by watching the video below.

 

Disclaimer

This blog provides general information for educational and informational purposes only and shouldn't be seen as professional advice.

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- By Fitterfly Health-Team

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