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Currently submitted to: JMIR Serious Games

Date Submitted: Jan 26, 2020
Open Peer Review Period: Jan 26, 2020 - Mar 22, 2020
(currently open for review)

Usability development and evaluation of a serious game for hemodialysis teens

  • Cristina Célia De Almeida Pereira Santana; 
  • Alessandra Vitorino Naghettini; 
  • Ana Tereza Vaz De Souza Freitas; 
  • Gilson Oliveira Barreto; 
  • Igor Sousa De Avelar; 
  • Renata Mazaro-Costa; 
  • Gina Nolêto Bueno; 
  • Diuly Caroline Ribeiro; 
  • Gabriela Damasceno Silva; 



Adolescents with chronic kidney disease (CKD) have difficulty adhering to hemodialysis as a renal replacement treatment. This difficulty has created the need to establish strategies that motivate treatment adherence.


To develop and evaluate the usability of a game in serious game mode to stimulate and motivate adolescents using hemodialysis.


This was a descriptive and exploratory research study developed from a technological production. The target population consisted of patients undergoing hemodialysis, aged 10 to 14 years. The study was conducted in two phases: the process of creating a serious game developed to guide the self-care of adolescents on hemodialysis and the evaluation of its usability.


A game developed in serious game mode for use in hemodialysis in which the player was encouraged to take care of a character through daily actions in hemodialysis therapy. In the usability analysis, the data showed that the serious game generated interaction, motivation, and better perception of the clinical condition by adolescents. Discussion: We found that the game generated motivation, allowed the perception of the clinical condition of the character, and allowed reflection on conditioning factors inherent to the disease.


The application proved to be a potential strategy for practice of care for the control of CKD and to be adjuvant to actions promoting self-care. The serious game was effective when used by teenagers undergoing hemodialysis.


Please cite as:

Santana CCDAP, Naghettini AV, Freitas ATVDS, Barreto GO, De Avelar IS, Mazaro-Costa R, Bueno GN, Ribeiro DC, Silva GD

Usability development and evaluation of a serious game for hemodialysis teens

JMIR Preprints. 26/01/2020:17979

DOI: 10.2196/preprints.17979


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