It may seem like an old wives’ tale but most physiotherapists will tell you that many of their arthritic patients can tell when the weather is about to change for the worse before it actually does saying they feel it in their bones. So I was very interested when I read the following in Mature Times.
‘It’s a mystery that’s perplexed people for over 2,000 years, but now University of Manchester scientists are on the verge of working out if the weather affects pain in people with arthritis and other conditions, all thanks to the British public and their smartphones.
Cloudy with a Chance of Pain, which launched yesterday (3 February) is the world’s first smartphone-based study to investigate the association between pain and the weather. The study will be carried out during 2016 using a smartphone platform called UMotif which people will use to record how they’re feeling, whilst local weather data is automatically collected using the phone’s GPS.
Anyone in the UK with arthritis or chronic pain and aged over 17 can take part. All participants need is a smartphone.
The University of Manchester research is supported by Arthritis Research UK, uMotif in London, and the Office for Creative Research in New York. It is being carried out in association with the University’s Health e-Research Centre.
Those who choose to use the uMotif app will record their symptoms each day, which will be tied into automatically collected local weather information. Even people who don’t have pain will be able to participate by browsing through the data and submitting their own ideas.
Once the project ends in January 2017, the research team will also carry out a formal analysis and hope to use the information for generating pain forecasts, allowing people to plan their weekly activities.’
The app, developed by uMotif, and for further information google cloudy with a chance of rain.
So why not sign up and help to decide…old wives’ tale or scientific fact?