Department of Pharmacy Practice

College of Pharmacy

DiDomenico and Kane release Digoxin Dosage app for Iphone and Android

Robert DiDomenico and Sean Kane Create Digoxin Dosage Calculator

By: Michelle Skinner

It falls just short of a heart-stopping moment, but only thanks to an innovative development produced by Clinical Pharmacist Robert DiDomenico and PGY2 Resident Sean Kane. The recent release of a mobile digoxin dosing calculator application created through the collaborative effort of Dr. Kane and Dr. DiDomenico will assist pharmacists in slowing pulses and preventing heart failure across the country, and has generated excitement that has left the collective pulse of the Department of Pharmacy Practice racing.  

The application developed from Dr. DiDomenico’s work in 2006 to develop a new method to determine the initial digoxin dose for patients with heart failure, which produced the Bauman-DiDomenico nomogram (click here to read the whole study). Dr. DiDomenico noted that he and Dean Bauman had wished to explore ways to promote the Bauman-DiDomenico nomogram through a user-friendly interface after their work was published in 2006. The pairing of Dr. DiDomenico’s passion for digoxin work with Dr. Kane’s own interest in pharmacokinetics and computer programming ability allowed for the development of an application that is not only user friendly, but also mobile.

That mobility proves to be the biggest asset of the application. The health care environment grows richer in technology every day, and the digoxin dosage calculator application frees health care professional from multiple manual calculation. “We’ve essentially taken the calculator out of the equation,” said Dr. DiDomenico. More importantly, Dr. DiDomenico and Dr. Kane have worked to make digoxin dosing more accurate. In less than 60 seconds, the application can provide a proper dosage of digoxin that accounts for a patient’s age, gender, weight, height, and renal function.

Yet getting to that point was no easy matter. Dr. Kane jump-started the process last April by approaching Dr. DiDomenico about an independent rotation month where he would work on developing the application. After an extensive literature review regarding digoxin that lead them from the original work done in the 1960’s-1970’s to the present, and permissions were received from the Annals of Internal Medicine to use the Bauman-DiDomenico nomogram, Dr. Kane undertook development of the application.

“The process was extremely challenging, but at the same time very exciting and rewarding,” Dr. Kane noted about the work required to create the mobile application.  Developing a mobile application interface that is comprehensive and flexible, as well as intuitive and atheistically pleasing stood as one of Dr. Kane’s biggest challenges in the development process. Flexibility was a must due to digoxin use to prevent heart failure as well as control cardiac arrhythmias. Dr. Kane needed to account for both the Bauman-DiDomenic nomogram (used in situation of heart failure) and the Koup and Jusko equations for treatment of fibrillation.  Though Dr. Kane has a background in computer programming, he admitted that adapting to the platforms required for iPhone- and Android-based applications proved to be one of the most difficult hurtles of the project. Those difficulties were eventually conquered, and after rigorous testing, the application can now be found in the iPhone Application store and the Android Marketplace, a feat that allows Dr. DiDomenico and Dr. Kane pride in their hard work and accomplishments.

To download the Android application visit here

To download the iPhone/iPad application visit here      

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