Is Using Interactive Technology to Monitor Fibromyalgia Symptoms Feasible?


Feasibility of Interactive Technology for Symptom Monitoring in Patients with Fibromyalgia.
– Source: Pain Management Nursing, February 20, 2013

By C.E. Vanderboom, et al.


Use of health information technology (IT) integrated with clinical services has the potential to empower self-management and decrease health care utilization for chronic disorders such as fibromyalgia (FM). However, the appropriate methodology that systematically facilitates the integration of health IT with clinical services between patients and nurses partnering to manage FM is unclear.

The purpose of this study was to determine the feasibility of technology-enhanced monitoring that engages FM patients using a mobile device.

A quantitative and qualitative descriptive design was used in a convenience sample of 20 FM patients. Patients used a mobile monitoring device for one week; nurses responded to patient e-mailed symptom reports on a daily basis. Analysis was primarily descriptive-percent, frequencies, and means for individual questionnaire items and subscales were calculated. For qualitative data, a 1 hour focus group was audio-recorded, transcribed verbatim, and then analyzed using content analysis. All participants used a mobile phone in their daily lives; half used a smart phone.

  • Participants were interested in using a smart phone to monitor their health and to communicate with health care providers.

  • Participants used the study mobile device an average of 5.2  days out of the 7 day study period.

  • Most participants (80%) reported that monitoring symptoms using the device was easy to do.

  • Sixty-five percent felt that using the device helped them to promptly address their symptoms.

Results from this study indicated that health IT integrated with clinical services is feasible to monitor FM symptoms and to communicate with the care team.

Pain Management Nursing, February 20, 2013. By C.E. Vanderboom, A. Vincent, C.A. Luedtke, L.M. Rhudy, K.H. Bowles. Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota, Minnesota. Electronic address:

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