Wisdom of the crowds harnessed for pain prevention

The Kipuriihi tool developed at the University of Oulu assesses the effectiveness of treatments for lower back pain using wisdom of the crowds. In April, Kipuriihi was introduced in Canada at the world’s premier international conference of Human-Computer Interaction.

Low back pain is the most common global health problem. There are a massive number of treatment methods available  that have not all been yet assessed. Randomised studies are published on medical treatments for back pain of course, but they do not cover alternative treatments or the general public’s tricks for treating pain.

‘The harm caused by low back pain has increased by approximately 50% over the past 25 years, and at any given time half a billion people are suffering from it,’ said Jaro Karppinen, Professor of Physiatry at the University of Oulu.

The Kipuriihi tool created by Jaro Karppinen and Simo Hosio gathers assessments by both the general public and doctors on forms of treatment and combines these into a general assessment for which the user can select the criteria.

The wisdom of the crowds theory, which was developed in the early 1900s, has been adopted to support the reliability of Kipuriihi.  The tool in itself was created during a three year long Academy of Finland-funded wisdom of the crowds project, which aims to bring the wisdom of the crowds to support decision-making.

Read more information here.

Source: University of Oulu


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