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Diseases related to the kidney often require prolonged follow up, close monitoring and good management at home. The introduction of apps that help patients self-track and self-monitor some important parameters can significantly impact survival and limit morbidity from kidney ailments. Clinical calculators also come very useful to the treating team allowing more adherence to theory, especially in overburdened setups.
Nephrology News is an app developed by Dr. Anass Qasem and available free on Google Play. The app houses a set of guidelines on different topics in the specialty. Useful topics can be marked out under favorites. Users can directly search PubMed, Google Scholar and YouTube, and browse Nephrology journals via the app. It could, however, have been better organized so that one did not have to scroll down the entire set of topics to find what they are looking for. The app does not work without an internet connection, another drawback. On the plus side, it does roll a newsfeed with the latest in nephrology research updated as soon as it is published.
Nephrology On-Demand Plus (Version 2.0)
This umbrella app has everything under its shade. It has a section for evidence-based medicine to aid clinical decision making with interactive forms about suitability for CAPD/CCPD, prognosis of IgA nephropathy, risk of Primary Arterio-Venous fistula failure and risk of mortality with hemodialysis. The selection is a bit haphazard, but if the format is used several times these few areas will be learnt by heart. The app also contains links to its web page on a wide range of educational materials, links to 10-minute videos and the full text of all the guidelines issued by different national nephrology associations. There is a discussion board segregated into several topic specific treads, a calendar of conferences, know how about jobs and what not. Many of the features require internet access but the calculators are available offline. The app looks childish but is well organized and is fully no frills.
The Dialysis Calculator is an app developed by the Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Chile in 2016. The app has a collection of 31 calculators under 6 heads, namely eGFR, nutrients, clearance and fractional excretion, urea distribution volume, hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis. It is very thorough and gives much more information than the average eGFR calculators out there. Absolutely a must have for nephrology residents and specialists. The best part is that it is available free for android devices and is entirely accessible while offline. The interface is simple and elegant.
The app, by the Royal College of Physicians, Edinburgh with the NHS, is a learning tool for medical students and junior doctors. It also calculates Acute Kidney Injury stage with baseline and current creatinine values. The material is concise and includes external links to consult for intensive study. There are also four case studies. The app would work wonders if its scope were expanded to cover more topics in nephrology and incorporate more case studies.
The app by Stat Pearls quizzes users on their knowledge of nephrology and tracks progress. The initial quizzes include sets of five questions. The app is free but its full version has to be purchased. This is a great way to test your knowledge, stay updated and review the subject. It is targeted to nurses but can also be used by medical students and allied health professionals.