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Journal of Healthcare Engineering
Volume 6 (2015), Issue 4, Pages 705-716
Research Article

Development and Evaluation of an Automated, Home-Based, Electronic Questionnaire for Detecting COPD Exacerbations

Francisco de B. Velazquez-Peña,1 Daniel Sanchez-Morillo,2 Mario Crespo-Miguel,3 Sonia Astorga-Moreno,2 MJ Santi-Cano,1 MA Fernandez-Granero,2 and Antonio Leon-Jimenez4

1Department of Nursing and Physiotherapy, University of Cádiz, Cádiz, Spain
2Biomedical Engineering and Telemedicine Research Group, University of Cádiz, Cádiz, Spain
3Department of Philology, University of Cádiz, Cádiz, Spain
4Pulmonology and Allergy Unit, Puerta del Mar University Hospital, Cádiz, Spain

Received 1 April 2015; Accepted 1 September 2015

Copyright © 2015 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Collaboration between patients and their medical and technical experts enabled the development of an automated questionnaire for the early detection of COPD exacerbations (AQCE). The questionnaire consisted of fourteen questions and was implemented on a computer system for use by patients at home in an un-supervised environment. Psychometric evaluation was conducted after a 6-month field trial. Fifty-two patients were involved in the development of the questionnaire. Reproducibility was studied using 19 patients (ICC = 0.94). Sixteen out of the 19 subjects started the 6 month-field trial with the computer application. Cronbach’s alpha of 0.81 was achieved. In the concurrent validity analysis, a correlation of 0.80 (p = 0.002) with the CCQ was reported. The results suggest that AQCE is a valid and reliable questionnaire, showing that an automated home-based electronic questionnaire may enable early detection of exacerbations of COPD.