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Cancer Center Tests Mobile Patient Tracking

Woman with smartphone


20 July 2016. Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York is evaluating mobile devices to track the quality of life experienced by multiple myeloma patients. The cancer center is partnering with Medidata Solutions, a provider of cloud-based analytics for clinical research, also in New York.

Multiple myeloma is a cancer of plasma cells, white blood cells helping fight infections by making antibodies that recognize invading germs. The disorder causes cancerous cells to accumulate in the bone marrow, crowding out healthy plasma cells. Instead of antibodies, the malfunctioning cancer cells produce abnormal proteins that cause kidney problems and other disorders.

Memorial Sloan Kettering says it treats more than 400 patients a year with multiple myeloma or related plasma cell diseases. Patients with this type of cancer receiving chemotherapy will be offered an opportunity to take part in the study, where they will wear an activity tracker, and capture data on their smartphone. In addition to physical activity, patients will record fatigue, appetite, and other quality-of-life measures.

Participants in the study will first wear the activity tracker for up to 7 days to establish a baseline, then continuously for 4 months, covering 4 cycles of therapy. Data will be captured in Medidata’s Patient Cloud app, with its ePro feature for patient-entered information and SensorLink that integrates data from apps in Medidata’s Clinical Cloud. The app is available for free from iTunes and Google Play app stores.

Medidata’s Clinical Cloud is the company’s software-as-a-service platform for data collection and analytics for clinical trials. Medidata says its Clinical Cloud databases already store 8 billion records from 2 million patients enrolled in 9,000 studies.

Memorial Sloan Kettering already offers a mobile app, known as Mobile MyMSK, for its patients. The app, available only in an iPhone version, tracks medications, symptoms, side effects, lab and radiology test results, and appointments. The app also has messaging, reports, and directory functions.

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