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GI folks will turn your guts inside out with utmost care. Their buddies hepatologists live by the motto: “Treat liver with love”. This review is about the apps for GI and Liver docs.

I had better luck with the liver apps. There were not that many, but most were functional.

iLiver

The app takes time to upload information from the internet but will work offline once it’s done. To my relief, I was allowed to use it as a guest, without registration. Once terms and conditions are announced, the app will try to throw you off guard by stating that it was designed for Iphones. Ignore it.

The app contains detailed information about the most common liver diseases. However, there are some blanks here and there. I encountered two “empties”: “Algorithms” in the chapter about Hepatitis E and “Specific measures” in the Hepatitis B section.

The other module of the app references over 50 scores, but the actual calculators are enabled only in a few. Regardless of the minor imperfections, it is a very good app which is also available as a tablet version.

MELD / PELD Score

The MELD (Model For End-Stage Liver Disease) score assesses the severity of cirrhosis. The app calculates the score and provides a reference table, i.e., score correlation with mortality in 3 months. The app requires an update since as of January 2016 the formula has changed and now it also includes serum sodium level.

In spite of the app’s name, there is no option to calculate the PELD Score (Pediatric End-Stage Liver Disease) which is used for children younger than 12 years of age.

I should also mention that the app uses mg/dl rather than mmol/l, and doesn’t provide the option to change the units.

Child-Pugh Score

This is another tool to assess severity of cirrhosis. In this app the measurement units could be switched between mg/dl and mmol/l which is useful as a lot of countries, including the US, still use mg/dl.

Out of interest, I looked up how the MELD and Child-Pugh score compare. The article that seems to be the most recent was inconclusive in spite of its length.

inPractice Hepatology

This is one of the many apps in the “inPractice” series with an identical interface. It is a good resource for professionals if there is an internet connection. The app contains only titles of numerous guidelines, and the full articles could be viewed online. The registration on the non-mobile version of their website is necessary in order to log in to the app.

GIT & Hepatology News

The concept is similar to the “inPractice” series but no registration is required. The app collects regular updates from a number of major journals, PubMed, and the professional medical websites. It shows only titles or abstracts and redirects to the respective online sources. It is not particularly helpful as most of the time you’d be asked to pay for the full content. Free materials can be saved in the PDF files on the phone. For example, The American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD) and European Society of Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (ESGE) offer free practice guidelines. Saved files are shown in the “Download” folder in the app and on the phone.

It is a useful app as it provides a daily news digest. Most physicians have some way of accessing full texts, either via university libraries or institutional or personal subscriptions. This app could be used as a triage tool.

In conclusion

Android OS remains the leader on the mobile app market offering 2.2 million apps. It remains to be free and open platform. It is reasonable to expect the increase in a number of apps, including medical, in 2017.

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