NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Synergy Pharmaceuticals today announced the launch of the Poop Troop, a series of 14 animated emojis designed to encourage conversation and allow people to better express the physical and emotional impact of chronic idiopathic constipation (CIC). Bowel movements can be a sensitive topic for people who live with CIC to discuss, often leaving them feeling a lack of validation from those with whom they may interact.
The Poop Troop is part of a broader disease education initiative launched by Synergy, called Confront Constipation, designed to raise the understanding and increase dialogue on managing CIC. The Poop Troop emoji keyboard app is available for iOS and Android and can be downloaded for free from the Apple App Store and Google Play store. Once installed, the Poop Troop can be accessed directly from the standard keyboard page on a user’s smartphone.
CIC is one of the most common functional gastrointestinal disorders worldwide, affecting approximately 33 million Americans and an estimated 14 percent of the global population. In addition to causing infrequent, hard stools and other physical symptoms such as straining, abdominal bloating and discomfort, CIC can adversely affect an individual’s quality of life, including increasing stress levels and anxiety.
As the use of smartphones becomes nearly universal, recent research has shown that more than 90 percent of people use emojis in their day-to-day digital conversations.1 The Poop Troop is inspired by the highly popular poop emoji, but reimagined for people living with CIC. Each character in the free keyboard app represents a type of bowel movement—from constipation, to normal, to diarrhea—and an emotion that people with CIC often associate with each, including “stressed,” “depressed,” “angry,” “relieved,” “cool,” “euphoric,” “surprised,” “concerned” and “embarrassed.”
“Many people with CIC feel embarrassed or uncomfortable talking about their symptoms with those closest to them, so they often suffer in silence,” said Julie Holcombe, Senior Director, Marketing, Synergy Pharmaceuticals Inc. “Our hope is that the Poop Troop can help make difficult conversations easier for people with CIC, while raising awareness around the impact of CIC beyond those living with this complex disorder.”
“Maintaining an open dialogue with your healthcare provider is one of the first steps to developing an appropriate treatment plan for CIC,” said Kimberly D. Orleck, MPH, RD, PA-C, Physician Assistant at Atlanta Gastroenterology Associates. “These emojis are not intended to serve as a diagnostic or a medical tool, however the Poop Troop may provide patients with a more comfortable, visual way to communicate their physical symptoms and related state of mind to their healthcare provider, which then may lead to more productive conversation around their health and CIC treatment goals.”
About Chronic Idiopathic Constipation (CIC)
CIC affects approximately 14 percent of the global population, disproportionately affecting women and older adults. People with CIC have persistent symptoms of difficult-to-pass and infrequent bowel movements. In addition to having infrequent, hard stools and physical symptoms such as straining, abdominal bloating and discomfort, CIC can adversely affect an individual’s quality of life, including increasing stress levels and anxiety.
About Synergy Pharmaceuticals
Synergy is a biopharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialization of novel GI therapies. The company has pioneered discovery, research and development efforts on analogs of uroguanylin, a naturally occurring human GI peptide, for the treatment of GI diseases and disorders. For more information, please visit www.synergypharma.com.
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1 2016 Emoji Report. Emogi Research Team. http://cdn.emogi.com/docs/reports/2016_emoji_report.pdf. Last accessed February 23, 2017.