Takeda Pharmaceuticals U.S.A. has announced the launch of a pilot digital technology program that consists of a watch specially designed to help patients and physicians manage inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), including Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis (UC).
The digital technology program, iBData, is designed to cross healthcare and digital technologies. Digital approaches are being used in new platforms across many sectors of healthcare to advance such steps as diagnostics, disease progression, and treatment response.
“iBData leverages the remarkable capabilities available today when wearable technologies and medicine converge, in an effort to help overcome these challenges,” Stephanie Brown, vice president and head of Specialty Business Unit at Takeda, said in a press release. “This innovative pilot program will explore new ways to transform care by generating novel insights into the patient experience that physicians can directly utilize.”
In partnership with Texas Digestive disease Consultants (TDDC) and Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC), the pilot program will allow IBD patients to track their symptoms and lifestyle using wearable watch technology.
The technology will allow physicians and patients to have an ongoing dialogue between visits — physicians will be able to analyze symptoms, triggers and aggravating factors to improve patient outcomes. In other words, iBData aims to improve communication in the exam room and between visits, fostering a more productive and continuous dialogue, and improving the understanding of each patient’s condition.
“The wearable aspect of the technology being used for iBData provides an opportunity to investigate how we as physicians monitor, assess and treat our patients,” said Tim Ritter, MD, TDDC’s medical director of luminal research.
UC and Crohn’s disease are marked by inflammation in the lining of the gastrointestinal tract. With no known cause, many researchers believe that the interaction between genes, the body’s immune system, and environmental factors play a role in the development of both conditions.
The pilot program will initially involve up to 100 patients to test adherence and user-friendliness.
“We are very excited about this project and its potential for both patients and physicians,” said Dawn M. Beaulieu, MD, assistant professor of medicine at the division of Gastroenterology, Hepatology & Nutrition at VUMC. “Giving patients the power to capture robust, real-time monitoring of their symptoms will help us as physicians to create a personalized treatment plan. Our hope is that this will ultimately result in better disease control and improved IBD care.”