New mobile app helps migraine sufferers track and analyze pain

November 5, 2012

A new iPhone app developed at the University of Michigan lets migraine or facial pain patients easily track and record their pain, which in turn helps the treating clinician develop a pain management plan.

Dr. Alexandre DaSilva, director of the & Orofacial Pain Effort (H.O.P.E.) at the U-M School of Dentistry and one of the project developers, said the app will help people with migraine, temporomandibular disorders (TMD) and other types of facial nerve pain.

Such pain can change over time, have multiple triggers, or the same patient might respond differently to the same treatment from one attack to the next. But to develop a successful pain management plan, the researchers say it's crucial that patients, especially sufferers, relay this information to physicians. However, it can be difficult to keep a pain diary in the midst of an attack.

DaSilva said PainTrek makes it easy: Patients just screen tap a 3D skull to pinpoint pain location and answer questions regarding intensity, external influences and other factors.

The app was developed for iPhone, iPad and iPod platforms. The Apple app store will tentatively release the free app in November. The was co-created by Eric Maslowski with collaboration from Stephanie O'Malley, Sean Sheehan and Sean Petty, all from the U-M 3D Lab.

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