Project Lead/Product Designer
Juhi Chakraverty and Payal Srivastava
4 months (May 2021 - August 2021)
Pen + Paper
A tablet app, that helps users with endometriosis and mental health recovery. This tool will connect users with suitable therapists and resources during their endometriosis journey.
Backstory— "What is Endometriosis?"
Endometriosis is when tissue similar to the lining of a uterus or womb grows outside where it doesn’t belong. Endometriosis can cause a list of serious complications, including infertility in the worst-case scenario. The diagnosis for endometriosis is a lengthy and tiring process that often involves a lot of tests, emotions and misdiagnosis along the way. This can cause a lot of stress for the person who has it.
It is also one of the most underfunded diseases in the world.
According to an article called “Endometriosis often ignored as millions of American women suffer” in The Guardian, reporter Jessica Glanza states “Where diabetes received more than $1billion in funding each year from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), last year endometriosis received just $7 m. That is down from $14m in 2011.
To put that into perspective, for each person believed to have diabetes in the United States, the NIH spends $35.66 annually. For each woman with endometriosis, the NIH spends $0.92.”
Defining the Problem
People who have endometriosis lack the emotional and physical security they need to freely participate in open discussions about their mental health. Therefore, they choose to keep the stress to themselves.
The Proposed Solution
“Endo” is a community-based platform for users with endometriosis, so they can come together to discuss their symptoms and their journey, in hopes to create a safe space for people to talk about their experiences and to better their mental health. It will also have a subscription service for users to subscribe to their own therapist that will help them create healthy habits and encourage positive thinking surrounding endometriosis.
The idea of Endo is to turn a taboo topic into an open discussion that in turn makes people who are feeling isolated and stressed from having endometriosis, feel supported and confident in themselves and encourage them to advocate for their health.
While doing research on endometriosis, I created some infographics of current alarming statistics happening with endometriosis. a lot of this research comes from studies done from 2015 to 2018. Endometriosis is one of the most underfunded diseases in the world, so the research is starting to be outdated. One of the many stigma's people with the disease face.
I put out a survey asking the opinions of this type of platform. The main criteria for selecting my respondents is that I wanted people who experienced endometriosis, whether they identify as a woman, transgender male, transgender female or non-binary. I wanted a diverse pool of different-aged applicants, and even though I didn’t ask their age specifically, I did however noticed their age range based on the social media tools mentioned.
I also wanted opinions on people who know someone in their life that is suffering from endometriosis. Three respondents out of 14 have reached the criteria, two had similar experiences with endometriosis (like PCOS) and the rest know people in their lives who currently have it.
30% of my participants say that they follow similar endometriosis support groups on social platforms like Facebook and even attend weekly meetings on Zoom.
20% of my participants say that having a platform like this would help them understand endometriosis more as well as, be able to help them comfortably address it if the topic ever comes up in conversation.
80% of my participants say that talking to a therapist about their struggles with endometriosis would definitely be beneficial to their mental health
Almost everyone agrees that the idea of a personalized therapy plan is a new idea that’s been proposed surrounding this topic and treatment and would be interesting to further explore.
Green is on-screen navigation on the home page with shortcuts highlighted in a light blue, this means users can travel quickly to designated sections based on the shortcuts they choose. The menu is the main navigation, with orange being a secondary option for users to go to. The purple in the diary section is re-routing back to the main diary menu and finally the pink is the landing pages after the secondary navigation.
Adella's User Journey
I knew that users of the Endo app would need focus their main priority on the security of the platform as therapy and the passing of files through the app to the users' doctors need to be done in a secure way. I also know that there are users who may look for therapy and users who might gravitate towards the pinned threads and symptoms diary features. I would have to provide users with a lot of opportunities to customize the platform to their liking.
Based on my findings, users would prefer to use this platform at home from a mobile device, so I figured making it a tablet app that is also convertible to smaller mobile devices is beneficial to my target audience and also provides them the comfortability and privacy that they need.
Here is an example of some of the low-fidelity screens I made for the main pages of the platform.
Some blockers I encountered while designing, was that I had a lot of trouble designing an intuitive home screen and menu screen that would guide users to use it. I found a lot of my test users were having trouble completing certain tasks because they didn’t go to the menu to find their next steps.
This meant that I had to build a home screen and a menu screen that helps them get to their destination and basically does the hard work for the user.
I decided to add shortcuts and other quick links in the bottom navigation of the homepage to allow users to be able to move around quicker on the platform and not consult the menu as much.
I also added a search bar for users to be able to search specifically for what they’re looking for.
User Testing & Draft Prototype Findings
Based on my draft prototype findings, I knew that users generally liked the platform but just wanted to change the home screen and some of the wording throughout the platform. They also wanted a page that people could go to, to check their friends list and interact.
After making those changes, I conducted another test to see what users thoughts were this time around. There was definitely an improvement of the platform after the much-needed menu and home screen changes. All my testers agreed that they would like to see this product again in its final stages as they believe the content is good and want to see images and colours on the platform now.
This is the final outcome based on the user testing I conducted and feedback.
The modifications I made consisted of me changing up the menu layout to be more user-friendly and also incorporating more colours into my palette so that there are more dimensions to my platform.
I also included gradients to help guide the users to the main focal points on the screen.
The Reflection— Final Thoughts
I’m pretty happy with the outcome of this platform idea. I really enjoyed talking to my target audience on how I can improve a platform like this.
If I could make any changes, I would reduce the number of available features on the homepage as I do believe it caused a bit of clutter and may be a bit overwhelming to first-time users. Initially, that was my solution for the homepage design problem I was running into during testing, but looking at it now I would’ve spent more time workshopping a solution for a better design.
Overall, I really feel that I helped bring awareness to an issue that affects 1 in 10 women worldwide. I hope with this idea, I can erase the taboo around talking about women’s health and endometriosis.