ICMR launches app for inflammatory bowel disease
New Delhi, May 19: Indian Council of Medical Research Director General, Dr Balram Bhargava, on Thursday released the 'IBD NutriCare App' for inflammatory bowel disease patients on the occasion of World Inflammatory Bowel Disease Day.
This digital health platform (IBD NutriCare) for telenutrition provides a potential tool for improving the patient care in IBD. This Android and iOS-based digital health platform in the form of a smartphone application is developed and validated for real-time tracking of dietary details and recording the data on a large scale for patients with IBD, said the ICMR.
It will provide a personalised patient response to a database on their demographics, medications, daily dietary intake based, clinical symptoms, and disease course, and provides a recording of diet variables based on nearly 650 Indian food recipes.
This telenutrition tool is a pioneering initiative undertaken by the ICMR's Centre for Advanced Research & Excellence (CARE) in Intestinal Diseases with Dr Vineet Ahuja, Professor in Gastroenterology, AIIMS, New Delhi as principal investigator to transform India's intestinal disease research and clinical practices.
The ICMR had commissioned, in 2019, a multidisciplinary CARE in intestinal diseases project with a team of researchers from various fields including gastroenterologists, dieticians and app developers to develop a culturally, educationally and linguistically relevant digital health platform. The IBD NutriCare App is available in eight Indian languages like Hindi, English, Marathi, Telugu, Gujarati, Tamil, Malayalam and Bengali, covering major geographical regions across India.
According to the Intestinal Disease Burden research paper published in 2017, the estimated disease burden in 2010 for India was 1.4 million patients with IBD, as compared to 1.6 million in the US which is the highest in the world. The data depicts that the burden of IBD has had an upward trajectory in recent years with disease rates paralleling the West.
IBD is characterised by non-infectious chronic inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract, and primarily includes Crohn's disease which can affect any segment of the gastrointestinal tract from the mouth to the anus, ulcerative colitis which is limited to the colonic mucosa, and indeterminate colitis.
This smart phone app provides real-time data which alerts the nutritionist or dietician regarding adherence issues, erroneous entries, and incorrect information thus helping timely dietary interventions and formulating individualised diet plans.