The role of M-health applications in the fight against Alzheimer’s: current and future directions

Abdelrahman Osman Elfaki, Mohammed Alotaibi


Background: Alzheimer’s disease has become a very significant problem in the current era that is very likely to worsen due to increasing life expectancy. The enormous potential of smart mobile devices has attracted researchers and medical practitioners alike to develop and provide M-health solutions for Alzheimer’s. In this paper, we explore, analyze and investigate the works that have attempted to develop M-health applications for Alzheimer’s over the last 10 years in order to highlight current and future directions, which it is hoped will assist medical practitioners and researchers to provide more solutions for fighting Alzheimer’s.
Methods: A systematic review approach was used in this study. Google Scholar is considered for searching the published papers for academic mobile applications and Google PlayStore is considered for non-academic mobile applications. More than 900 titles of various papers were reviewed. The selection of the papers was dictated by a set of inclusion and exclusion criteria.
Results: Current directions are identified by presenting the services and functions that are provided by M-health applications for Alzheimer’s patients and the technologies that are used to do so. Current services are classified into four groups and the future directions for each of these groups are presented.
Conclusions: Numerous M-health applications that fight against Alzheimer’s have been surveyed and analyzed by using scientific methodology in which inclusion and exclusion criteria have been used. Based on this analysis, we were able to present the current research foci and define potential future research directions.