Mayo's App Helps Cut Cardiac ED Visits, Readmissions, Study Finds

A new study from the Mayo Clinic has found the use of a Mayo-developed app in cardiac rehabilitation helps reduce emergency department visits and hospital readmissions.

For the study, researchers designed an online and smartphone-based mobile app aimed at helping patients undergoing rehabilitation for stent placements following heart attacks. The mobile app tracked patients' blood pressure, dietary and sugar levels, physical activity and weight. It also provided educational content, including showing patients ways they could prevent another cardiac-related issue.

The researchers found about 20 percent of patients who used the application were either readmitted to the hospital or admitted to an ED within 90 days, compared with about 60 percent of patients who received traditional rehabilitation.

Researchers also found the patients who used the mobile application weighed an average of nine pounds less than the control group and had an average blood pressure lower than that of the control group.

"The takeaway is that digital health, mobile health, can be used for cardiovascular disease prevention, especially in a high risk group," said R. Jay Widmer, the lead researcher of the study, in a news release.

The three month study included 44 patients, 25 of whom used the mobile application and 19 who underwent traditional cardiac rehabilitation.

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