Charles River Analytics Creates Anger Management App to Aid Service Members and Veterans

Charles River Analytics, a developer of intelligent system solutions, announces a contract with the US Army to aid service members and returning veterans. Charles River is partnering with Boston University and the National Center for PTSD (posttraumatic stress disorder) at the VA Boston Healthcare System to create a mobile application to help service members and veterans manage extreme anger, which is often associated with PTSD and traumatic brain injury (TBI). The application, called Remote Exercises for Learning Anger and Excitation Management (RELAX), is a handheld device application for iOS mobile devices, such as the iPad and iPhone.

Dr. James Niehaus, a scientist at Charles River explained “RELAX is a mobile app for practicing anger and stress management. It is integrated with proven therapies, enhancing the ‘homework’ practice component of the therapy process. It includes physiological sensors to detect anger symptoms and a therapist interface to streamline therapy and increase provider-patient interaction.”

The figure below shows an example of RELAX in use. On the left, the patient views the opening screen of the app. In the middle, the patient enters the inciting incident for the anger report. On the right, the patient selects physical signs (which is then followed by emotional signs and thoughts) that surround the incident.

Screenshots from RELAX

“By recognizing symptoms of anger, patients are better able to cope and continue with their daily lives,” said Dr. Scott Neal Reilly, Vice President, Decision Management Systems. “We are excited about the opportunity to help service members and returning veterans through the RELAX program.”

Charles River’s other efforts in medical support and training include:

Laparoscopic Surgery Training System — methodologies for refreshing skills and training skills to be durable are being developed and applied to aid military surgeons deploying and returning from deployment. Surgeons efficiently refresh their laparoscopic surgery (LS) skills through training systems and courses that improve effectiveness and retention.

Pictorial Representations of Medical Procedures to Train for Effective Recall — improves the retention of battlefield first-aid skills by presenting critical first-aid skills through simple, intuitive symbols.

Helping Amputees through Virtual Environments — helps Veterans recovering from traumatic amputation through a 3D virtual multiplayer environment that enhances the peer support system.

Learn more about these related medical training efforts.

This work is supported by the US Army Medical Research and Material Command under Contract No. W81XWH-12-C-0067. The views, opinions and/or findings contained in this report are those of the author(s) and should not be construed as an official Department of the Army position, policy or decision unless so designated by other documentation.

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