Frailty is a hot topic in geriatrics. As our population continues to age, providers, patients and their families will continue to struggle with how best to assess and help frail geriatrics patients. This has led to a recent surge in geriatric apps, from fall prevention wearable devices to mobile apps.
The American Geriatrics Society defines frailty as “a state of increased vulnerability to stressors due to age-related declines in physiologic reserve across neuromuscular, metabolic, and immune systems.” The end state of frailty is failure to thrive. How can providers assess frailty? There is no “one” diagnostic test for frailty and numerous clinical tools exist. One of the best accepted of these is the Edmonton Frail Scale. A 2006 publication by Rolfson, et al. found the Edmonton Frail Scale both valid and reliable. Alternatives include the simple mnemonic FRAIL and the Hopkins Frailty Assessment.
Here on iMedicalApps we have reviewed numerous geriatrics apps including many from the American Geriatrics Society including Geriatrics at Your Fingertips, Multimorbidity/MCC GEMS, and iGeriatrics. None of these medical apps include any of the validated assessments for frailty. The Edmonton Frail Scale medical app was created by Create Multimedia, a company based out of Belgium. This app appears to be one of their only healthcare apps and can be used in Dutch, French or English. The medical app is simple in its execution — calculating the Edmonton Frail Scale score — but clearly has a multimedia company’s artistic flair.
Evidence based medicine
The Edmonton Frail Scale App cleverly calculates the valid and reliable Edmonton Frail Scale for use at the POC, but fails to include much information on how best to use the score or the background on the evidence supporting the scale.
Who would benefit from this App?
Any healthcare provider who cares for geriatric patients including students, NP’s, PA’s, geriatricians and other primary care providers.
Disclaimer: The views expressed are those of the author(s) and do not reflect the official policy of the Department of the Army, the Department of Defense or the U.S. Government.
- Slick user interface with built in drawing and timing capabilities.
- Easy to use at the point of care with patients and families.
- Fills a need for a POC frailty app.
- Available for iOS and Android.
- No references.
- No information on how to interpret the results.
- No information about the validity and reliability of the scale.
A useful and unique geriatrics calculator app that can be used with patients and their families at the point of care to assess frailty. The Edmonton Frailty Scale medical app lacks the needed follow-on information to make it more useful to providers unfamiliar with the scale.
- Overall Score
- User Interface
Intuitive interface with built in calculations with unique features such as Clock Drawing Test, timer for Timed Get Up and Go Test, etc. A pleasure to use.
- Multimedia Usage
No significant multimedia aspects to app other than the interface. This medical app would benefit by including links to the literature supporting the Edmonton Frail Scale.
This medical app is free
- Real World Applicability
For providers caring for geriatric patients, the Edmonton Frail Scale app is a very slick, easy to use app of this valid and reliable scale. I only wish the authors had provided more background on how best to use the information at the point of care.
- Device Used For Review
iPhone 6S running iOS 9.2
- Available for DownloadAndroidiPhoneiPad