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PatientsLikeMe adds information about patient experiences with medications to Walgreens Pharmacy website

                Newly-enhanced health dashboard now includes access to patient-reported data on side effects for 5000+ medications CAMBRIDGE, MA., February 18, 2015—PatientsLikeMe is working with Walgreens to help make it easier for people to understand how the medications they take may affect them. Now, anyone researching a medication or filling a prescription on Walgreens.com can access a simple snapshot that shows how their prescribed medication has impacted other patients on the therapy, including medication side effects, as reported by PatientsLikeMe members. PatientsLikeMe is a free, online network where patients living with chronic conditions can track their health, connect with others and contribute data for research. More than 300,000 individuals have joined PatientsLikeMe and shared their own experiences with various treatments. The PatientsLikeMe-sourced information is updated daily with new patient reports and covers many medications available at Walgreens pharmacies. PatientsLikeMe is the first featured external contributor to the new Walgreens Health Dashboard, a secure and private personalized health information offering. Walgreens can access PatientsLikeMe content to share information that may be of interest to Walgreens patients based on individual medication needs.     “Leveraging patient perspectives and experiences through Walgreens Health Dashboard provides our patients with …

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PatientsLikeMe invites patients to lead research projects on Open Research Exchange

New $2.4 Million Grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Supports Two Patient-Led Projects in 2014 to Develop, Test and Validate Patient-Reported Outcomes CAMBRIDGE, Mass.—March 27, 2014—Expanding on its mission to put patients at the center of clinical research, PatientsLikeMe today announced that patients can now apply to lead the development of new health outcome measurements using the company’s Open Research Exchange™ (ORE) platform. This call for participation is a way for people living with disease to become the researcher, and to use their own and others’ experiences to create new health measures that are more meaningful, helpful, and relevant. ORE was launched in 2013 as an online hub for the development of patient-reported outcomes (PROs)—measures used by clinicians to gauge health, disease severity, and quality of life. Since then, thousands of PatientsLikeMe members have given researchers feedback on measures relating to hypertension, treatment burden, diabetes and appetite, and primary palliative care. There were six pilot studies fielded on ORE last year and, while response goals varied from study to study, on average researchers using ORE collected 100 percent of their required responses in less than a week’s time. PatientsLikeMe’s Vice President of Innovation Paul Wicks said that’s far faster …

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“We can and will do better” – An interview on pulmonary fibrosis with Dr. Jeff Swigris

Just this past month, a few members of the PatientsLikeMe Team (Arianne, Dave and Rishi) traveled to La Jolla, CA for the Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation Summit. It was quite the mixed crowd (with patients, clinicians and researchers), and it gave them (and everyone at PatientsLikeMe) a chance to learn more about pulmonary fibrosis (PF) from different points of view. Thank you to everyone who stopped by our exhibit booth and for sharing your experiences. While they were there, the team had the chance to interview Dr. Jeff Swigris. He’s an Associate Professor of Medicine at National Jewish Health in Denver and has been working with PF patients for almost two decades. He’s published over 65 articles on interstitial lung disease (ILD), most on IPF, and he has a special interest in Patient Reported Outcomes (PROs) and patients’ Quality of Life (QOL). Dr. Swigris is also the Director of the Participation Program for Pulmonary Fibrosis (P3F), an online resource for patients, caregivers or anyone interested in learning more about PF. On the P3F website, patients and caregivers can also find out about studies they can currently enroll in. Right now, the P3F is currently enrolling for a study that aims to …

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Improving drug safety through the patient voice

At PatientsLikeMe we’re interested in bringing the voice of our patients to the attention of those who make drug products and to the regulators that approve them. Since 2008 we have conducted a series of projects to collect safety information from some of our member communities. We’ve worked with our pharmaceutical partners to help them better understand the safety experiences of patients while they are using certain drug products. I’d like to introduce you to a new acronym – P.R.O.S.P.E.R.  It stands for Patient-Reported Outcomes in Safety Event Reporting and it promotes the value of including patient experiences in monitoring the safety of drug products during clinical trials and after drugs are approved. The PROSPER Consortium is co-led and supported by PatientsLikeMe and Pope Woodhead, a UK healthcare firm, with input from most global pharmaceutical companies, many clinical and academic groups, as well as regulators, researchers and patient advocates. A report from the Consortium was recently published in the journal Drug Safety that provides guidance for using patient reported outcomes (PROs) for safety monitoring processes. These are just a few of the reports findings… The patient perspective is an essential component of drug safety Patient-centeredness and patient safety are emerging …

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Share and Compare: A PatientsLikeMe Year in Review (Part II – R&D)

The PatientsLikeMe research and development (R&D) team is excited about what we can all share and learn in 2011.  Here’s a look back at some of what patients like you shared with us, and what we then shared with the world, in 2010. The R&D team published and presented some unprecedented insights based on what you shared with us this year.  In addition to attending and presenting at some noteworthy conferences in 2010, we also published a series of blogs and podcasts pulled together just for you. Based on your feedback, the R&D team also implemented some changes to the medical architecture that will help improve the research we do, as well as your experience as a patient on the site.  Ultimately, we are working to develop tools that help you answer the question: “Given my status, what is the best outcome I can hope to achieve and how do I get there?” Today and tomorrow, we’ll be highlighting some of the work we’ve done in 2010 focused on various communities.  Today, we start with the following (listed from newest to oldest community): Organ Transplants Researcher Catherine Brownstein MPH, Ph.D. presented a poster at the American Society of Nephrology (ASN) …

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Share and Compare: Be a PRO! Understand Your Experiences in Context

This week on our blog, we’ve been highlighting how patients like you are putting their experiences in context.  With the launch of InstantMe and some of the design updates you read about, you can see we’re listening to your call for more functionality that lets you understand how your condition affects the whole you. Patient Reported Outcomes (PRO) questionnaires are a great tool to illuminate the physical, mental, and social dimensions of your overall health. In fact, PROs are increasingly used in clinical trials, and in December 2009 the FDA approved the use of PROs to support product claims. Best of all, PROs are free of clinical interpretation, which empowers you, the patient, to have your voice heard in the real world. PatientsLikeMe is an unparalleled platform for electronic PROs, which have a few advantages over traditional pen-and-paper ones, such as: Patients are more likely to share and share truthfully using electronic interfaces; Researchers have real-time access to the data; Electronic PROs enable alerts for specific concerns (such as adverse side effects), ensuring better safety for all patients (1). Early on in our partnership, our colleagues at the biopharmaceutical company UCB proposed a longitudinal PRO survey: members of our Epilepsy …

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Epilepsy Awareness Month: What do you know about Epilepsy?

Launched earlier this year, the PatientsLikeMe Epilepsy community now has more than 3,000 patients.  In honor of Epilepsy Awareness Month, here’s a snapshot of what patients like you are sharing and learning about in this community. Did you know… You can search for patients by more than 10 seizure types, such as simple partial, myoclonic, atonic, and tonic-clonic. You can also search by 19 different epilepsy types, including temporal lobe, frontal lobe, occipital lobe, juvenile myoclonic, Lennox-Gastaut syndrome, and epilepsy with grand mal seizures on awakening. Others in the community have indicated a causative comorbidity for their condition, such as: Head injury (242 patients to date) Brain tumor (70 patients to date) Stroke (38 patients to date) Encephalitis (34 patients to date) 543 patient members were diagnosed recently (5 years or less) and 823 were diagnosed 20+ years ago. Nearly 500 patients have completed the first in a series of surveys that measure their mental, physical and social well-being. (See “Manage your epilepsy like a PRO”) As part of this first survey, members told us the top issues most important to them – indicating the top three as overall quality of life, seizure worry (i.e., impact of seizures) and mental …

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Know Thy Self – Measuring Your Quality of Life

Last Fall, PatientsLikeMe introduced our Quality of Life (QoL) tool which is displayed on the profiles of members in the HIV community.  By answering a few questions, patients can see how HIV is impacting them – physically, socially and mentally.  Today, this same QoL measure is used by thousands of patients across the HIV community and other communities, such as Epilepsy and Organ Transplants. PatientsLikeMe Research Scientist, Michael Massagli, recently spoke with us in a PatientsLikeMeOnCallTM podcast interview about the goal, outcomes and benefits to measuring your quality of life. Listen here: “[In the HIV community], we’ve taken a look at the relationship between QoL and CD4 level and find the average score of patients with CD4 below 200 is significantly lower for physical, mental and social well-being.  People with the most comprised immune systems have worse quality of life, across all 3 domains, than other patients… “ To date, several of our members have at least three QoL scores on their profile.  Mike says, “Multiple uses of the QoL instrument by the same person over time helps researchers determine how small a change in QoL scores is meaningful to patients or important enough to evaluate how a treatment is …

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FDA’s New Guidance on Patient-Reported Outcomes

We’re big fans of patient-reported outcomes (PROs) here at PatientsLikeMe, defined by the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) as: “A measurement based on a report that comes directly from the patient about the status of a patient’s health condition without amendment or interpretation of the patient’s response by a clinician or anyone else.” The self-report questionnaires we use on PatientsLikeMe to measure your health (such as the mood map, ALS-Functional Rating Scale/ALS-FRS, and other rating scales) are all examples of PROs, and they’re designed to accurately reflect the level of disease severity for a particular condition. Contrast PROs with the results of a blood test or an MRI scan; these are measured by someone other than the patient and are interpreted by healthcare providers. When a disease is relatively well understood and can be measured directly, as in HIV, measurement can be performed with objective measures such as blood levels (e.g., CD4 count and viral load). However, for many disease there is no objective measure for a disease (e.g., fibromyalgia). That means that trials and other clinical research studies are dependent entirely on the report of the patient themselves through PRO instruments. The FDA has recently released a new report: …

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