Duke Digital Health Science Digest – Issues 66

Posted | Posted in Digital Health Science Digest

In this issue: ingestible mHealth sensors, what the end of net neutrality means for telemedicine, and more!

The Digital Health Science Digest is a bimonthly newsletter compiled by Duke Digital Health. We bring you the most interesting research publications, policy news, and other fun digital health science stuff.  

More here: dukedigitalhealth.org

Subscribe here to get these digests direct to your inbox! 

Like it? Click here to forward this email to a friend

Issue 66



Medication adherence is often a problem for both doctors and patients. That may be changing, as the FDA has just approved the first ingestible sensor, allowing doctors to see when patients take a pill.

A recent study showed that using Cardiogram technology, the Apple Watch can detect sleep apnea and hypertension, both of which are problems that affect millions of Americans. As many of these people often have no idea they are affected, access through this technology is promising.

When you get a cold, you can usually hear it in a stuffy nose. But the Healthymize app can detect more than that, analyzing breathing patterns for signs of COPD, with future hopes of detecting heart disease and even mental illness.


Thomas R. Insel, the former director of the National Institute of Mental Health, invites you to join him and the other disruptors of health science.

How do wearables for physical activity impact adolescents’ motivation to exercise? Negatively, according to a new study among 13-14 year old girls and boys. Findings identified reductions in autonomous motivation and significant increases in amotivation after 8 weeks of wearing Fitbits.

Using commercially available mHealth apps in a self-management intervention shows promise in promoting physical activity among adults with musculoskeletal and neurological conditions, compared with usual care. Intervention participants were trained on goal-setting, self-monitoring, and action planning, and received either paper-based diaries or an application on a computer tablet to facilitate behavior change. 


The FDA recently approved cochlear implant adjustments via telemedicine based on a study that showed no significant difference between patients who had their implants adjusted in-person vs. programmed remotely. The move aims to reduce burdens to treatment.

As the FCC edges toward repealing net neutrality, telemedicine could face new challenges. Eliminating net neutrality could mean that health disparities between high and low income populations increase, as remote access to healthcare is hampered by limited Internet connectivity.

Grab Bag

Our director, Gary Bennett, shared his weight loss app wisdom in a new opinion piece in the Herald Sun. He’s pretty smart. You might want to listen to him.

The Duke Mobile App Gateway has announced a new RFA to fund 2 research projects on the Medable platform. Applications are due January 31, 2018. Funded researchers will also receive 10 hours of support from the Mobile App Gateway team. Contact mobileapps@duke.edu for more information.

The Duke Center for REsearch to AdvanCe Healthcare Equity (REACH Equity) is seeking applications for a mentored career development award for junior faculty. Up to 6 awards will be funded this year. The awards provide up to $75,000 per year for 2 years. Applications are due February 1, 2018.

Upcoming Events

Medable 101 Workshop
Wednesday, December 6th, 1:30-4:30pm
DMP 2W96
Register here

Medicine Grand Rounds – REACH Equity: Responding to the ‘Fierce urgency of now’
Friday, January 12, 8am – 9am
Speaker: Kimberly Johnson, MD
Trent Semans Center for Health Education – Great Hall More information and registration here

If you’d like to submit an event or article for us to publish in our digest, please send at least 3 weeks before the event to: erica.levine@duke.edu

Fill in your details below to subscribe and get these delivered straight to your inbox!