Smartphone-Applications for Seizure-Management  

Abstract

The review covers range of aspects of the study. The research study “Smartphone-Applications for Seizure-Management “ chosen for review is on smartphone apps that are helpful for seizure management. These smart phone applications are expected to enhance techniques of seizure management to great extent. Since not many studies have been conducted on this subject matter, this particular research study has been done to fill up the gap. It is basically a review on research problems, literature underpinnings, expected contributions on future research studies, research findings, limitations identified followed by recommendations.

Table of Contents

1.0 Introduction
1.1 Commenting on Research Problems or Questions Addressed by the Author
1.2 Commenting on Theoretical Argument or Theoretical Underpinning
1.3 Appropriateness of Methods Adopted
1.4 Key Findings and Implications
1.5 Contributions of the Work Reported in the Article
1.6 Identification of Research Limitations
1.7 Suggestions and Recommendations for further Improvement or future Research
1.8 Conclusion
References

1.0 Introduction (Importance of the Study)

The study that has been chosen for review is on Smartphone Applications for Seizure Management. The authors of the journal are Puneet Singh Pandher of Northern Health, Australia and Karamdeep Kaur Bhullar of Goulburn Valley Health, Australia. The importance of the study lies in the fact that the journal focuses on how integration of technology with health has led to advancement of health care services. The study emphasizes that advancement of technology continues to enhance standard of patient care in medicine. There has been an increasing popularity of smart phones and applications or apps across the globe. These apps seem to influence every aspect of human life including healthcare “Smartphone-Applications for Seizure-Management”.

The researchers go on to explore the salient features of smartphone applications with respect to seizure management. The study is conducted on five major platforms namely, Android, iPhone, Windows Mobile, Blackberry and Nokia Symbian. The study especially has investigated the apps that support seizure management tools. The outcomes of the study were quite revealing as the researchers identified that majority of the applications is focused on epilepsy management. However, the research has also come out with suggestive improvements by ensuring these apps to also focus on comprehensive educational information on seizure apart from seizure tools like video recording, medication tracing and seizure diaries. In other words, the topic of the study is contemporary and its outcomes will directly influence the health conditions of patients of current generation.

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1.1 Commenting on Research Problems or Questions Addressed by the Author (significance of the questions)

The research problems have been well placed in the study. The researcher has at first provided a background of the emergence of smartphones. How the devise can be considered to be a major breakthrough in terms of technological advancement has been clearly explained. The researcher has mentioned that a combination of smart computer applications with mobile technology has led to development of smartphones, which has over the years of its introduction and enabled users to lead an easier way of life.

The fact that smartphones can be used for various purposes including maintaining of health and fitness gets revealed when through the study it is revealed that one of the major advantages of smart phone technology is that it has the ability to run downloadable computer applications. From this utility perspective of smartphones the researchers of the study comes to the main context of the study, health and medical usage apps. There is no doubt that the apps offer wide range of facilities from instant access to journals and other medical references including emergency calls to personal diaries, monitors and other inbuilt tools. While introducing the subject matter of the study, the researchers gradually come to research problems that they have identified to solve with the progress of the study.

According to Rajasekar et al. (2006), identification of research problems is indeed an important aspect of a study, as much of the standard of the study depends upon it. In fact, as Kothari (2012) says to what extent a particular study develops an ability to contribute to future academic studies or the associated fields largely depends upon the quality of problems or issues that are identified to get solved during the course of the research. For this particular study, the researcher has mainly come up with two major problems. The first problem is identified to be that there is hardly any encouragement or acknowledgement given from medical boards and practitioners regarding authenticity of the apps that are meant for helping patients to maintain good health. Only few studies are carried out on this field barring few on common diseases like asthma or diabetes cessation, weight loss and cessation of smoking. However, no such similar studies have been done on epilepsy. On identifying lack of medical support for apps helping epilepsy patients, the objective of the research study is to examine the characteristics of smartphone apps for the purpose of seizure or epilepsy management. On identifying research problems, the researchers are expected to come up with effective solutions. The solutions are important as they are expected to enhance the efficacy of seizure management apps in smartphones. “Smartphone-Applications for Seizure-Management”.

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1.2 Commenting on Theoretical Argument or Theoretical Underpinning

The research study has not quite focused on using theories while commenting on the subject matter of the study. This is mainly due to the fact that topic of the study is quite contemporary. In the study itself it has been mentioned that not many scholars have taken up the subject for investigation. The concept of smartphone is relatively a new. In fact, the idea of smartphone and its usability is basically still evolving. So, the idea regarding shape and reach of smartphones is yet to be determined based on which new theories can be developed. However, the researcher during discussion of the results of the data analysis, have often mentioned information that are sourced from secondary literary studies.

1.3 Appropriateness of Methods Adopted

According to Peffers et al. (2007) the methods adopted for conducting studies are indeed important as they to great extent influence the overall quality of the study. The methods especially developed for collection of data and consequently data analyses are responsible for determining research outcomes.
The method of data collection for this particular study has been focused mainly on primary data collection. The primary data collection has been conducted quite exhaustively as the researcher has considered that the five major smartphone platforms namely, Android, iPhone, Nokia Symbian, Blackberry and Windows Phone. The information has been collected and stored in compatible devises for the purpose of data analysis. The researchers have especially given importance on sources from where the data is to be collected. In order to maintain authenticity of data, there researchers have collected information on file size, app price, user ratings and release dates from individual app stores. “Smartphone-Applications for Seizure-Management”.

As per the study of Smith (2012) data collection method becomes all the more authentic when the researcher involves inclusion and exclusion criteria. Apart from targeting field of research on five major smartphone platforms the researchers of this particular study have further narrowed the search by considering information that are only associated to terms like “seizure management” and “epilepsy”. Therefore the apps that were included in the study were written down in English language. On the other hand, the apps that are only directed towards professionals of health care.

The researchers have made use of software to collect, store and analyse data. For instance, Microsoft Excel 2010 has spreadsheet was used to store data. On the other hand for statistical calculations and analysis were tested by the process of using analysis of variance. Data was assessed and analysed not only as statistical calculations but also in the form of content analysis. As per the exclusion criteria there were about 8 well defined criteria that ultimately formed the core component of the process of content analysis. The methodology can therefore be considered to be well structured. Every stage of research methodology has been aimed at meeting the objectives of the study. “Smartphone-Applications for Seizure-Management”.

The study has not much devoted space for a separate literature review. The theories or the concepts of smartphone applications especially with respect to epilepsy has been utilized for analyzing and later while discussing about the results of data analysis. However, there is absence of a comprehensive literature review. The approach of the study seems to be deductive. Since the deductive approach unlike the inductive approach mainly concentrates on theory testing and concluding based on the results of the tests, for this particular research the researchers have collected data and analysed to test the validity and ultimately to conclude with definite findings.

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1.4 Key Findings and Implications

As per the study of Pedler (2012), the research findings to great extent determine the success of the research study. For this particular research study, the results show that by analyzing all the five platforms of smartphone apps, about 28 of the apps meet the criteria. The researchers have found that there are currently around 28 applications that are helpful for epilepsy patients. Also, the researchers found that there is increasing number of apps being built in the smartphones for enhancing efficiency of providing aid to patients of epilepsy. The first two findings were positive ones as they showed that the apps were useful for epilepsy patients. Also, the number of such apps is gradually increasing for ensuring effective management of seizures. However, the researchers also came up with some negative findings as well. As per the negative findings, it has been found that although there has been an increasing number of seizure management apps, there are not many apps that are focused on providing comprehensive educational information on epilepsy or ways to seizure management. It is essential for patients to have theoretical knowledge about the diseases and the factors that causes them. Since it is often found that proper knowledge of factors that cause epilepsy is helpful for people to deal with the disorder, the study throws a strong light on the need for such apps that would provide such range of information. Therefore, the findings of the study can be considered to be quite useful as they have raised the very need of development of knowledge enabled seizure management apps. “Smartphone-Applications for Seizure-Management”.

1.5 Contributions of the Work Reported in the Article

The very purpose of the study is to come up with information related to seizure management with the aid of smartphones. In other words, the study aims out on coming up with findings associated to how far the smarphones can be put to use for enabling patients of epilepsy to lead an easier life. On considering the fact that smartphones are now of great help for users in almost every aspect of life, the researchers were expecting this new technology has also enormous potentiality to contribute to good health.

However, the researchers realized the medical fraternity has been quite ineffective in conducting research studies that would investigate to identify the authenticity and approve the apps useful for ensuring good health. So, the researchers basically conducted the study and come up with findings that will contribute to fill the gap.

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In fact, the study has been conducted with some definite purpose and objectives. On being able to meet the purpose and the objectives, the researchers have been able to significantly contribute to the relevant field of study. To an extent the study has opened a new way to ensuring health based apps in smartphones that has so far has been overlooked by both technology experts and medical practitioners. The idea that technology can be utilized to ensure biological health is a new concept. This concept has huge potentialities to contribute to future of health and medicine. So, the findings of the study can be expected to be considered as base for developing literature review of future studies that are relevant to the subject matter. “Smartphone-Applications for Seizure-Management”.

1.6 Identification of Research Limitations

As stated by Mahoney (2010), every research study will have certain limitations that some way or the other affect the quality of research findings and the study over all. Blessing and Chakrabarti (2009) states that it is very essential to identify research limitations as researchers who would likely be conducting further research studies will avoid factors that have contributed to formation of such limitations. Hence, future research studies are expected to be coming up with more detailed and comprehensive outcomes and findings as the limitations similar to the current study will be successfully avoided.
This particular study has some limitations as identified by the researchers. However, these limitations are found to be quite valid and some of them were quite significant. One of the major limitations of the study is certainly with respect to absence of prober guidelines that are to be followed during data analysis. It was quite clear that while setting up the guidelines of content analysis, the researchers did not have much theoretical support. Apart from guidelines published in National Institute for Health and Clinical Institute the researchers where hardly left with any literature where they can have some suggestions for development of proper guidelines for content analysis. “Smartphone-Applications for Seizure-Management”.

Also another major limitation that has been identified is with respect to the fact that the analyses have been done without involving the consumers. The analyses have been done with respect to technological aspects of the smartphones. However, the extent to which these apps are functional and actually help users in seizure management have not been investigated.

1.7 Suggestions and Recommendations for further Improvement or future Research

Suggestions and recommendations generally get developed based on the findings and especially limitations of the study. From the findings of the study, it can be suggested that future researchers while conducting the study, should focus on acquiring exhaustive theoretical knowledge based on which they can develop proper guidelines for data analysis. The overall study reflects that there is absence of adequate use of secondary sources of information. Such secondary information has been only put to use while discussing about the results. However, it is equally important to ensure that the entire study to be developed on a strong literary base. While framing concepts and theories, it is quite difficult to go ahead with primary data analysis without conducting proper literature review. Therefore it is very essential for future researchers to conduct exhaustive data analysis.

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Also, as identified from limitations of the study, it is highly recommended that future researchers should conduct primary data analysis by targeting consumers. On doing so, the researchers will actually get the real idea regarding the functionality of such apps that helps in management of epilepsy seizure. In fact, the consumers will be the best source of finding data that would effectively help in determining the extent to which apps of smartphones are actually helpful for seizure management. “Smartphone-Applications for Seizure-Management”.

1.8 Conclusion

The review of the study therefore essentially focuses on the problems identified to be solved with the progression of research. The review also consists of investigating into how far the study has been able to develop adequate theoretical argument, the methods adopted to carry on with the study, important findings and implications. The review has further focused on the key contributions that the current research study can make on future research studies and the relevant field of study. Moreover, the review has focused on identifying limitations and recommendations of the study.
The problems of the study have been well identified. The methodology of the study has been found to be developed as per the identified problems and hence ways to bring solutions. The results of data analysis have been able to come up with some useful research findings. These findings are expected to contribute to future studies as they have point out some important aspects like lack of knowledge based apps in smartphones for seizure management. There are certain research limitations as well. One of the most prominent limitations is the lack of data collected by targeting users or consumers. Also, there is not much usage of secondary literary sources while conducting the study. Based on such limitations, the review of the study has also come up with certain recommendations. The review therefore can be considered to have covered important aspects of the overall study. “Smartphone-Applications for Seizure-Management”.

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References

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