AN APPLICATION FOR MONITORING PATIENTS WITH DRUG-RESISTANT EPILEPSY AND OTHER NEUROLOGICAL DISEASES TREATED WITH KETOGENIC DIETARY THERAPY

ProfessorAnna Tagliabue

AN APPLICATION FOR MONITORING PATIENTS WITH DRUG-RESISTANT EPILEPSY AND OTHER NEUROLOGICAL DISEASES TREATED WITH KETOGENIC DIETARY THERAPY

Ketogenic Dietary therapy requires constant nutritional monitoring over time both to ensure its effectiveness and to reduce the likelihood of short- and long-term adverse effects. In the standard of care, clinical and nutritional monitoring is performed both at clinical visits and via e-mails. The patient is asked to send the monitoring diary and the food diary by email once a week to allow the team to evaluate adherence, effectiveness of the treatment and the need for changes to the diet plan.

This method is often overlooked because it is time-consuming and data communication occurs intermittently. The majority of patients do not send the requested information but limit themselves to frequently asking for changes in the diet plan, by phone or email

For this reason, a computerized tool (Ketty) has been developed, which can also be used by smartphone, thanks to the joint effort of our lab and the Biomedical Informatics Laboratory of the Department of Industrial and Information Engineering and the Mondino Neurological Institute, with the specific purpose of supporting subjects in therapy with a ketogenic diet for drug-resistant epilepsy or other pathology . The application developed is meant to act as a bridge reducing the current gap between those patients and the multidisciplinary clinical staff

The purpose of the study is:

  1. Test the feasibility of using the application in a group of patients on a ketogenic diet. The outcome will be positively assessed if:
    1. Drop out rate (patients who discontinue the study before 12 weeks) <30%
    2. Number of monitoring and missed food diaries (ie number of responses provided by the App and not given by the Patient) <30%
  2. Number of patients refusing to participate in the study <30%
    1. Test the usability of the application and the utility perceived by patients in order to collect suggestions for improving the application, based on: Score obtained in the satisfaction questionnaire given to the patient ≥16