v4 is a freeware computer program
that permits the interactive simulation
of plasma insulin
and blood glucose
(BG) profiles for demonstration, teaching, self-learning, and research purposes. It has been made freely available on the World Wide Web as a non-commercial contribution to continuing diabetes
education. In the 10 years since its internet launch over 700,000 visits have been logged at the AIDA Websites and well over 200,000 copies of the program have been downloaded. Further copies have been made available, in the past, on diskette by the system developers and from the British Diabetic Association (now called ‘Diabetes UK
’), London, U.K.
Overview of AIDA model
AIDA v4 has been described in detail in the medical / scientific / computing literature . It incorporates a compartmental model that describes glucose-insulin interaction in patients completely lacking endogenous insulin secretion. It contains a single extra-cellular glucose compartment into which glucose enters via both absorption from the intestine
and glucose production from the liver
. The AIDA v4 model] also contains separate compartments for plasma and ‘active’ insulin, the latter being responsible for glycaemic control while insulin is removed from the former by liver degradation. Full details of the AIDA v4 model are accessible from within the AIDA software package and can be viewed and printed separately via the AIDA website
Limitations of model
It is important to note that AIDA v4, like other model-based approaches, is not sufficiently accurate to be used for individual patient simulation or glycaemic prediction . Therefore, as the program makes clear, it is not intended for therapy planning and can only be used for teaching, self-learning, demonstration, or research purposes. While the AIDA v4 software can simulate a wide variety of insulin dosage and diet adjustments, it should be stressed that the purpose of AIDA is to create a learning environment for communicating and training intuitive thinking when dealing with such adjustments. In this respect AIDA appears most of use for recreating clinical situations – rather than trying to predict best outcome.
Use as an educational tool
The AIDA v4 software comes with forty educational case scenarios as standard, each of which represents a ‘snapshot’ of the metabolic status of a typical patient with respect to insulin-dependent type 1 diabetes mellitus
. It is easy for users to add or create further case scenarios, as required. Examples of the application of AIDA v4 as an educational tool can be found in various journal articles and a full demonstration can be viewed on line at, or downloaded without charge from, the AIDA Website.
Independent user reviews of the AIDA software can be found on the Web at http://www.mendosa.com/aida.htm and http://www.2aida.net/aida/review.htm as well as in the medical / diabetes / computing literature . The AIDA diabetes simulator has been independently selected for inclusion in the United Kingdom National Health Service National Library for Health Diabetes Specialist Library list of Web resources
- http://www.2aida.org , http://www.2aida.net, http://www.2aida.info - AIDA websites