Interactive Journal of Medical Research

A new general medical journal for the 21st century, focusing on innovation in health and medical research

Editor-in-Chief:

Gunther Eysenbach, MD, MPH, FACMI


Impact Factor 2023

i-JMR is a general medical journal with a focus on innovation in health, health care, and medicine - through new medical techniques and innovative ideas and/or research, including—but not limited to—technology, clinical informatics, sociotechnical and organizational health care innovations, or groundbreaking research.

i-JMR is indexed in PubMed and archived in PubMed Central, DOAJ, and Clarivate's Emerging Sources Citation Index (ESCI).

Recent Articles

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Viewpoints

COVID-19 has impacted billions of people and health care systems globally. However, there is currently no publicly available chatbot for patients and care providers to determine the potential severity of a COVID-19 infection or the possible biological system responses and comorbidities that can contribute to the development of severe cases of COVID-19. This preliminary investigation assesses this lack of a COVID-19 case-by-case chatbot into consideration when building a decision tree with binary classification that was stratified by age and body system, viral infection, comorbidities, and any manifestations. After reviewing the relevant literature, a decision tree was constructed using a suite of tools to build a stratified framework for a chatbot application and interaction with users. A total of 212 nodes were established that were stratified from lung to heart conditions along body systems, medical conditions, comorbidities, and relevant manifestations described in the literature. This resulted in a possible 63,360 scenarios, offering a method toward understanding the data needed to validate the decision tree and highlighting the complicated nature of severe cases of COVID-19. The decision tree confirms that stratification of the viral infection with the body system while incorporating comorbidities and manifestations strengthens the framework. Despite limitations of a viable clinical decision tree for COVID-19 cases, this prototype application provides insight into the type of data required for effective decision support.

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Reviews

The strategic plan of the Ethiopian Ministry of Health recommends an electronic medical record (EMR) system to enhance health care delivery and streamline data systems. However, only a few exhaustive systematic reviews and meta-analyses have been conducted on the degree of EMR use in Ethiopia and the factors influencing success. This will emphasize the factors that make EMR effective and increase awareness of its widespread use among future implementers in Ethiopia.

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Respiratory Medicine

The increase in admissions to intensive care units (ICUs) in 2020 and the morbidity and mortality associated with SARS-CoV-2 infection pose a challenge to the analysis of evidence of health interventions carried out in ICUs. One of the most common interventions in patients infected with the virus and admitted to ICUs is endotracheal aspiration. Endotracheal suctioning has also been considered one of the most contaminating interventions.

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Reviews

The COVID-19 or SARS-CoV-2 outbreak was declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization in March 2020. Almost 2 years later (early February 2022), the World Health Organization reported over 383 million cases of the disease caused by the virus, with over 5.6 million deaths worldwide. Debate regarding the routes of transmission was substantial early in the pandemic; however, airborne transmission emerged as an important consideration. Infectious airborne agents can spread within the built environment through heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning (HVAC) systems. Multiple features of HVAC systems can influence transmission (eg, ventilation, filtration, UV radiation, and humidity). Understanding how HVAC features influence airborne transmission is critical to mitigate the spread of infectious agents.

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Viewpoints

Public health has a pivotal role in strengthening resilience at individual, community, and system levels as well as building healthy communities. During crises, resilient health systems can effectively adapt in response to evolving situations and reduce vulnerability across and beyond the systems. To engage national, regional, and international public health entities and experts in a discussion of challenges hindering achievement of health system resilience (HSR) in the Eastern Mediterranean Region, the Eastern Mediterranean Public Health Network (EMPHNET) held its seventh regional conference in Amman, Jordan, between November 15 and 18, 2021, under the theme “Towards Resilient Health Systems in the Eastern Mediterranean: Breaking Barriers.” This viewpoint paper portrays the roundtable discussion of experts on the core themes of that conference.

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Articles

Older adults have worse outcomes following hospitalization with COVID-19, but within this group there is substantial variation. Although frailty and comorbidity are key determinants of mortality, it is less clear which specific manifestations of frailty and comorbidity are associated with the worst outcomes.

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Information Quality in Digital Media

An estimated 15% of the global population is living with a disability. In Kenya, children with disabilities remain among the most vulnerable populations, experiencing substantial barriers to wellness and inclusion. Smartphone ownership and internet access have been increasing across sub-Saharan Africa, including in Kenya. Despite these advances, online or mobile resources remain limited and difficult to find and navigate.

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Viewpoints

Radiology, being one of the younger disciplines of medicine with a history of just over a century, has witnessed tremendous technological advancements and has revolutionized the way we practice medicine today. In the last few decades, medical imaging modalities have generated seismic amounts of medical data. The development and adoption of artificial intelligence applications using this data will lead to the next phase of evolution in radiology. It will include automating laborious manual tasks such as annotations, report generation, etc, along with the initial radiological assessment of patients and imaging features to aid radiologists in their diagnostic and treatment planning workflow. We propose a level-wise classification for the progression of automation in radiology, explaining artificial intelligence assistance at each level with the corresponding challenges and solutions. We hope that such discussions can help us address challenges in a structured way and take the necessary steps to ensure the smooth adoption of new technologies in radiology.

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Epidemiology

Epidemiological criminology refers to health issues affecting incarcerated and nonincarcerated offender populations, a group recognized as being challenging to conduct research with. Notwithstanding this, an urgent need exists for new knowledge and interventions to improve health, justice, and social outcomes for this marginalized population.

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Digital Health, Telehealth and e-Innovation in Clinical Settings

Headaches are common and often lead patients to seek advice from a pharmacist and consequently self-medicate for relief. Computerized pharmacy decision support systems (PDSSs) may be a valuable resource for health care professionals, particularly for community pharmacists when counseling patients with headache, to guide treatment with over-the-counter medications and recognize patients who require urgent or specialist care.

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Respiratory Medicine

Continuous monitoring of vital signs has the potential to assist in the recognition of deterioration of patients admitted to the general ward. However, methods to efficiently process and use continuously measured vital sign data remain unclear.

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Viewpoints

The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the use of remote patient monitoring in clinical practice or research for safety and emergency reasons, justifying the need for innovative digital health solutions to monitor key parameters or symptoms related to COVID-19 or Long COVID. The use of voice-based technologies, and in particular vocal biomarkers, is a promising approach, voice being a rich, easy-to-collect medium with numerous potential applications for health care, from diagnosis to monitoring. In this viewpoint, we provide an overview of the potential benefits and limitations of using voice to monitor COVID-19, Long COVID, and related symptoms. We then describe an optimal pipeline to bring a vocal biomarker candidate from research to clinical practice and discuss recommendations to achieve such a clinical implementation successfully.

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