Health Care 3.0

Health Care Trends With a Social Media Twist

How Your Gadgets are Changing the Face of Diagnostics

On a day-to-day basis we all interact with so many different forms of technology. Between cell phones, computers, video games, tablets, digital cameras, MP3 players and more, it’s no wonder that we all get a bit tired of the tech at times. However, doctors globally are taking devices we use daily and turning them in to diagnostic powerhouses.

Most recently, researchers in Seoul have started using Nintendo Wii remotes to help diagnose ocular torticollis, a medical condition where a person’s head is tilted to one side to compensate for eye conditions. The Wii controllers were utilized to accurately monitor slight movements of the head. When compared to the industry standard device, results showed that measurements of the Wii setup were very close. As a lower cost, easy to use option, the Wii setup has serious potential in the ophthalmological field.

Unfortunately, not all medical professionals are on board with this emerging trend.

Toward the end of February, three physicians from the Mayo Clinic Healthy Living Center in Rochester, MN utilized an iPad to help save the life of a patient. After a cycling trip, a 48-year-old man with a history of heart trouble felt a pounding in his arm. Luckily, the stranger he asked for help ended up being a doctor. And, he was a doctor who was able to access medical records on his iPad; quickly diagnosing the patient's symptoms as a blockage in his stent.

This type of forward thinking let the patient be accurately treated quickly, instead of waiting hours for in-hospital tests. However, reports have been issued warning against using iPads for clinical diagnosis. In this case, without it, it is unclear as to what the outcome would have been for the patient.

In situations like the above two, do you think that gadgets can be used, by knowledgeable professionals, to effectively complete diagnoses?



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