Matthew Mullan – Independent Project

Matthew Mullan – Independent Project

Class of 2017

Introduction to Topic

My biomedical senior project consists of the time spent in the past school year shadowing at Johns Hopkins Medical Center in White Marsh. I shadowed a team of physical therapists, observing their daily routines, which included the treatments of their patients, recording notes on the treatment methods they used, as well as the different therapeutic techniques they used while treating various injuries. During my time there, I recorded notes on each patient that I could observe each day; my notes consisted of the patient’s cause for their visit, their symptoms, the treatment that was conducted, and the future progression and treatments they would have during therapy. After shadowing the therapist, I soon realized an issue that came across often during the counselling or fact finding stage of treatment. This problem was that some of the patients had trouble recalling the pain they had been feeling since their last visit and the activities they had been doing, especially the patients who visited their therapist between once a week to once a month. To resolve this issue, I thought of an innovation that could solve this dilemma. The idea was the use of a Fitbit or any wristwatch fitness tracker that is similar, to have the function to sync to a program that the therapist use, called EPIC.

Project Description

The purpose of my time that I spent shadowing Mandi Davis, an orthopaedic physical therapist, this past year was to assess if my innovation idea that I thought of when I went to therapy for my mother. The idea being able to help patients recall and/or take note of any time between their last visit and the current one, times that they felt pain and the pain level associated with it, as well as the activity they were doing at the time of the pain. With Fitbit and wristbands alike becoming more and more popular today, it becomes more sensible to use that technology to assist those who work in the medical field complete their job more accurately, with no misunderstandings between the therapist and patients. This idea molded perfectly when I saw that the therapist at Johns Hopkins use a computer program that could easily benefit from this innovation to the current technology we already use.

Experience Description

During my experience shadowing the team of therapist, I not only shadowed therapist in the orthopaedic field, but therapist in the sports medicine category as well. Those therapist as you could guess specialized in injuries that occurred whilst playing a sports or recreational activities. The two therapists that specialized in sports medicine at the clinic were Pat and Andrew. Pat is currently a resident a Johns Hopkins, and to pass the exam he must take they practice a program called FMS, or Functional Movement Screen test. This was conducted by one of the residential therapist at John’s Hopkins in practice for their test they must take to pass their course. The procedure is an assessment test that is commonly used today’s in college sports such as Football and Basketball. The test assesses an athlete’s abilities before the season to make sure that they are more prone to injuries, thus hurting themselves midseason. The overall function of the test is to look at one’s balance, posture, weakness, and strengthens in their body. One fascinating evaluation they did during the assessment was using this test called a Y-Balance Test, this looks at the balance of one’s hips when doing directional one-legged squats (Griffin, P., 2017) (Naylor, A., 2017).

In addition to shadowing therapists in sports medicine, I also had the opportunity to shadow an orthopaedic therapist. They treat patients that vary in treatment needed, ranging from chronic pain to vertigo. The more interesting patients were the ones who had torn their ACL is are attempting to make a complete recovery. These types of patients were interesting because it was inspiring how they are putting their body through so much pain in attempt to strengthen and recover their muscles from in my opinion one of the worst injuries a person can receive that isn’t a broken bone. Other cool and intriguing patients were those who had total knee replacements, and the reason I found those treatments cool is because of the prosses the therapist must conduct with the patient every visit. The must work away the scar tissue that builds up around the area of incision, peel away the extremely thick scab that forms over top of the wound to allow the wound to heal, and they also must remove any puss build up that forms in the region around the incision.

Innovation Description

My innovation idea consists of using the computer program the therapist use at Johns Hopkins called EPIC, and the functionality of the Garmin/Fitbit apps on ones’ iPhone or Android to create an app or program. This program will allow the two to connect to each other and sync the information store on the app to EPIC for the therapist to view. I thought of this innovation idea when I was shadowing Mandi, one of her patients were having trouble recalling activities they were doing since their last follow-up appointment.

With that in mind, I talked to my Aunt about the program they use on their computers when they are treating their patient. She explained to me that the program allows them to create notes on the computer about what they are currently doing with the patient. Thus, allowing this information to shared amongst the other therapist that will be treating the same patient. Additionally, when I was talking to her I brought up the idea of communicating with their patient’s outside of visit times. Mandi explained how they only currently communicate on whether they are showing up or cancelling their appointment the day of. I introduced the idea of using a syncing function with the Garmin app to EPIC, which she said would be a brilliant idea.

The Garmin app currently allows the user to create an activity they had just done and track their heart rate, steps, and intensity level. The innovation idea would take those measured pieces of data and store on the program to be synced to EPIC. The patient would use the functionality to take note on when they had experienced pain during the activities or at any time during the day, where they felt pain, and the note the pain intensity level they experienced. Then, when the patient shows up for their therapy appointment they will just simply sync their app to EPIC like how the watch already syncs to the app. When they sync the information to EPIC, the therapist will be able to view the notes they had taken, giving the therapist an accurate interpretation of the time since the patients last appointment. Because of this, the therapist will be able to give a more appropriate/suitable treatment for the patient.

This innovation solves the issue of the patient not being able to remember some of their experiences since the previous follow-up. The innovation also goes together with the statistic that more of the population is starting to have a Fitbit or wristbands alike to monitor their daily health and physical activity. Also, with most the population having a smartphone device there would be little error in incorporating the innovation into other fields not just physical therapy.

I went about showing the innovation idea using Sketch-up and a PowerPoint to present the innovation idea since it would be nearly impossible for me to develop a functioning app the does all of this with EPIC and the Garmin/Fitbit app compatibility. The Sketch-up shows a simple correlation between the wristwatch syncing to the app on the phone, followed up by the app syncing to the therapist computer. The PowerPoint gives a rough idea of how the information would be displayed on the app and the program, as well as the functioning process that is done for the syncing process.

+ Project Topic

Introduction to Topic

My biomedical senior project consists of the time spent in the past school year shadowing at Johns Hopkins Medical Center in White Marsh. I shadowed a team of physical therapists, observing their daily routines, which included the treatments of their patients, recording notes on the treatment methods they used, as well as the different therapeutic techniques they used while treating various injuries. During my time there, I recorded notes on each patient that I could observe each day; my notes consisted of the patient’s cause for their visit, their symptoms, the treatment that was conducted, and the future progression and treatments they would have during therapy. After shadowing the therapist, I soon realized an issue that came across often during the counselling or fact finding stage of treatment. This problem was that some of the patients had trouble recalling the pain they had been feeling since their last visit and the activities they had been doing, especially the patients who visited their therapist between once a week to once a month. To resolve this issue, I thought of an innovation that could solve this dilemma. The idea was the use of a Fitbit or any wristwatch fitness tracker that is similar, to have the function to sync to a program that the therapist use, called EPIC.

+ Project Overview

Project Description

The purpose of my time that I spent shadowing Mandi Davis, an orthopaedic physical therapist, this past year was to assess if my innovation idea that I thought of when I went to therapy for my mother. The idea being able to help patients recall and/or take note of any time between their last visit and the current one, times that they felt pain and the pain level associated with it, as well as the activity they were doing at the time of the pain. With Fitbit and wristbands alike becoming more and more popular today, it becomes more sensible to use that technology to assist those who work in the medical field complete their job more accurately, with no misunderstandings between the therapist and patients. This idea molded perfectly when I saw that the therapist at Johns Hopkins use a computer program that could easily benefit from this innovation to the current technology we already use.

+ Experience

Experience Description

During my experience shadowing the team of therapist, I not only shadowed therapist in the orthopaedic field, but therapist in the sports medicine category as well. Those therapist as you could guess specialized in injuries that occurred whilst playing a sports or recreational activities. The two therapists that specialized in sports medicine at the clinic were Pat and Andrew. Pat is currently a resident a Johns Hopkins, and to pass the exam he must take they practice a program called FMS, or Functional Movement Screen test. This was conducted by one of the residential therapist at John’s Hopkins in practice for their test they must take to pass their course. The procedure is an assessment test that is commonly used today’s in college sports such as Football and Basketball. The test assesses an athlete’s abilities before the season to make sure that they are more prone to injuries, thus hurting themselves midseason. The overall function of the test is to look at one’s balance, posture, weakness, and strengthens in their body. One fascinating evaluation they did during the assessment was using this test called a Y-Balance Test, this looks at the balance of one’s hips when doing directional one-legged squats (Griffin, P., 2017) (Naylor, A., 2017).

In addition to shadowing therapists in sports medicine, I also had the opportunity to shadow an orthopaedic therapist. They treat patients that vary in treatment needed, ranging from chronic pain to vertigo. The more interesting patients were the ones who had torn their ACL is are attempting to make a complete recovery. These types of patients were interesting because it was inspiring how they are putting their body through so much pain in attempt to strengthen and recover their muscles from in my opinion one of the worst injuries a person can receive that isn’t a broken bone. Other cool and intriguing patients were those who had total knee replacements, and the reason I found those treatments cool is because of the prosses the therapist must conduct with the patient every visit. The must work away the scar tissue that builds up around the area of incision, peel away the extremely thick scab that forms over top of the wound to allow the wound to heal, and they also must remove any puss build up that forms in the region around the incision.

+ Innovation

Innovation Description

My innovation idea consists of using the computer program the therapist use at Johns Hopkins called EPIC, and the functionality of the Garmin/Fitbit apps on ones’ iPhone or Android to create an app or program. This program will allow the two to connect to each other and sync the information store on the app to EPIC for the therapist to view. I thought of this innovation idea when I was shadowing Mandi, one of her patients were having trouble recalling activities they were doing since their last follow-up appointment.

With that in mind, I talked to my Aunt about the program they use on their computers when they are treating their patient. She explained to me that the program allows them to create notes on the computer about what they are currently doing with the patient. Thus, allowing this information to shared amongst the other therapist that will be treating the same patient. Additionally, when I was talking to her I brought up the idea of communicating with their patient’s outside of visit times. Mandi explained how they only currently communicate on whether they are showing up or cancelling their appointment the day of. I introduced the idea of using a syncing function with the Garmin app to EPIC, which she said would be a brilliant idea.

The Garmin app currently allows the user to create an activity they had just done and track their heart rate, steps, and intensity level. The innovation idea would take those measured pieces of data and store on the program to be synced to EPIC. The patient would use the functionality to take note on when they had experienced pain during the activities or at any time during the day, where they felt pain, and the note the pain intensity level they experienced. Then, when the patient shows up for their therapy appointment they will just simply sync their app to EPIC like how the watch already syncs to the app. When they sync the information to EPIC, the therapist will be able to view the notes they had taken, giving the therapist an accurate interpretation of the time since the patients last appointment. Because of this, the therapist will be able to give a more appropriate/suitable treatment for the patient.

This innovation solves the issue of the patient not being able to remember some of their experiences since the previous follow-up. The innovation also goes together with the statistic that more of the population is starting to have a Fitbit or wristbands alike to monitor their daily health and physical activity. Also, with most the population having a smartphone device there would be little error in incorporating the innovation into other fields not just physical therapy.

I went about showing the innovation idea using Sketch-up and a PowerPoint to present the innovation idea since it would be nearly impossible for me to develop a functioning app the does all of this with EPIC and the Garmin/Fitbit app compatibility. The Sketch-up shows a simple correlation between the wristwatch syncing to the app on the phone, followed up by the app syncing to the therapist computer. The PowerPoint gives a rough idea of how the information would be displayed on the app and the program, as well as the functioning process that is done for the syncing process.

By | 2017-05-15T15:03:58+00:00 May 15th, 2017|Biomed Capstone Project 2017|1 Comment

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One Comment

  1. Melissa Moskunas May 26, 2017 at 8:49 pm - Reply

    Good job, Matthew!!

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