According to the National Institute of Health, asthma is the most frequently found chronic disease among children. The good news is that asthma is not a particularly lethal disease as long as the afflicted individual conforms to proper preventative care. However, a longstanding problem that the medical community has tried to address is how to get patients to comply with these regimens. Therefore, we have developed a game called Wind Runners which encourages asthmatic children to measure their peak expiratory flow (PEF) on a daily basis. This is an important preventative care regimen which allows a physician to monitor the health of the individual's lungs and be able to identify emerging problem areas before they become too serious. We tackle the issue of compliance from two avenues. The first avenue is by incorporating the spirometer used to measure PEF as an integral part of the gameplay experience thus providing incentive for them to perform the regimen. The second avenue is incorporating social features into the game which allow children to discover and interact with others who have asthma. The hope is that this evolves into a social support group which will encourage them to take the proper preventative care steps to mitigate their asthma.
This project is in collaboration with Dr. Ashu Sabharwal and his team at Rice University. This game is being developed on the Android platform and uses a custom Bluetooth spirometer developed by Dr. Sabharwal's team at Rice University.
For more information on the mobileSpiro hardware, please visit http://sh.rice.edu/projects.html.Back