Wrist-worn Parkinson’s device gives patients the best care

A study from US researchers, published in the Journal of Parkinson’s Disease shows how the Parkinson’s KinetiGraph, invented by Professor Malcolm Horne, helps doctors optimise the medical management of Parkinson’s patients.

Professor Horne is now recruiting patients for a new Parkinson’s study, called the Treat to Target study.

Currently, it is difficult to accurately track a patient’s motor symptoms when the patient is at home.

Professor Malcolm Horne co-founded Global Kinetics to bring the KinetiGraph to market. It is the first FDA-cleared technology to provide continuous quantitative data on movement disorder symptoms including tremor, bradykinesia (slow movement) and dyskinesia (abnormal or impaired movement) in a non-clinical setting.

The wearable technology is worn at home by patients for several days to help doctors objectively monitor motor symptoms. The information is available for review during the patient’s next clinical visit.

The study was conducted at the Parkinson’s Institute and Clinical Center in the US from December 2015 through July 2016.

It was comprised of a survey completed by four movement disorder specialists to whom KinetiGraph data was available for four categories of patients: patients visiting the clinic for the first time, patients with fluctuations in Parkinson’s symptoms, patients with an unclear Parkinson’s symptom history and patients considering advanced therapy like having a deep brain stimulator implanted.

For each patient visit, the survey assessed whether or not the PKG provided additional information beyond what could be gathered through physician examination and patient-reported symptoms. An evaluation of the impact of the additional information on changes to clinical management was assessed.

Of the 112 surveys conducted in the study, 41 per cent indicated that the PKG provided additional information to the physician. Of these surveys, 78 per cent showed that the data resulted in changes to the patient’s treatment plan. The most common new piece of information from the KinetiGraph resulting in treatment changes was precise information on when the patient was not adequately treated, referred to as ‘daily OFF times’ (50 per cent).

Professor Horne said,

“These results confirm that objective Parkinson’s symptom measurement not only helped doctors decide which patients needed to change their current therapy, it also resulted in a meaningful improvement for the patients themselves – they felt better and had a better quality of life. This are the results we need to show in order for agencies like Medicare to fund patients to obtain these results.”

John Schellhorn, CEO of Global Kinetics Corporation said, “In the absence of standardised objective measures for assessing and managing PD, we believe that PKG has the potential to transform the care and outcomes of patients living with the daily challenges of this disease. The results of this study support the use of PKG as an important tool for individualising therapy to best meet each patient’s unique needs.”