Apps on Google Play Store to assist in self-management of hypertension in Indian context: features analysis study


Background: A large number of individuals with hypertension are turning to the Internet and m-health technologies for assistance. There is a need to study the content of smartphone applications on hypertension. The study aimed to review and investigate the functional and analytical characteristics of apps related to the self-management of hypertension available on Google Play Store. Methods: Search was conducted in February 2021 in India using the Google Play Store database to identify currently available Android-based apps related to self-management of hypertension/high blood pressure (BP). Keywords used were: 'Hypertension', 'High blood pressure', 'DASH diet', 'Hypertension diet', and 'Blood pressure diet'. A total of 822 apps were screened based on the duplicates, inclusion, and exclusion criteria. A total of 210 were included for further analysis. Results: Eighteen percent (n=37) of the apps had an overall rating of 4.5 or above. About 41% of the apps belonged to the medical category and 41% of the apps were characterized in the health and fitness category. Feature of logging/recording the BP measurement was seen in 73% of the apps. In-app graphing to analyze BP trends was reported in 64 % of the included apps. A few apps focused on tracking medication (n=19), sodium intake (n=2), and calorie intake (n=4). Conclusions: The features were common across all the included apps and were focusing only on recording the BP, providing statistics and trends of BP, and providing educational information. App developers should now aim to provide other components of self-management techniques to help individuals tackle hypertension.

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