Computers have a better record of accurately diagnosing Alzheimer's disease than human physicians do. They read MRI brain scans and compare them to a database of known cases.Read the full report on BBC: "Computers 'spot Alzheimer's fast'"
After years of pleading from patients, doctors are starting to offer virtual office visits, or virtual house calls, depending on how you look at it. Of course it's not for major diagnoses or serious health problems--your doctor needs to check you out in person for the big stuff. But for minor complaints, routine check-ins, and the like, why not use videoconferencing? Until recently, insurers were a major roadblock. But now that's changing.
Read the full Los Angeles Times story: "Online house calls click with doctors"
The new combat helmet now being tested may become an integral part of the new F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, replacing the traditional jet fighter head-up display with computerized "symbology" projected directly onto the pilot's visor.
In addition to keeping pilots on top of navigation, weapons and other aircraft, the Helmet Mounted Display System will superimpose a binocular-wide field-of-view, infrared image of the world below, allowing the pilot to "look through" the cockpit floor at night. This will let a pilot turn in any direction and still be able to see a virtual heads-up display, replacing … Read more
Has Silicon Valley acupuncturist Ted Ray come up with the cure for jet lag?
FlyRight is an herbal concoction that Ray says will ameliorate the effects of jet lag. Jet lag is often caused by the disruption in a person's circadian rhythms--the rhythms an individual establishes with the day/night cycles where they have been living.
But there are other causes--canned, recycled air; stress; dehydration; and poor blood circulation. All of these symptoms can be attenuated by the various herbs in the liquid, he says. Ginkgo? Good for swelling and fatigue caused by poor circulation. Linden works on circadian … Read more
A new study shows that children with type-1 diabetes exhale significantly higher levels of methyl nitrate when their blood sugar is high. That might not sound like earth-shattering news, but it could mean that diabetics have a noninvasive way to check their blood-sugar levels down the road.
Breath samples were taken from 10 children while they were in a hyperglycemic state and at intervals after they were given insulin. Those samples were then sent to a lab that normally studies air pollution. Their research allows them to detect trace chemicals in the atmosphere. They tested the breath samples for more … Read more
The United Nations and a group of U.S. organizations including Microsoft are working together to bring the latest medical information to health professionals in poor countries free via the Internet, according to a report in the Chronicle of Higher Education.
The U.N. and librarians from Yale and Cornell Universities have teamed up with journal publishers to create the Internet service, which will help hospitals in developing countries gain access to otherwise expensive articles and research on medicine. (The project is run by the U.N.'s Health InterNetwork Access to Research Initiative, among other U.N. groups.) Microsoft … Read more
Electronic records hold the potential to improve medical care by flagging problems such as drugs that shouldn't be combined, but a study by Stanford and Harvard medical school researchers has concluded that so far they haven't improved the quality of outpatient health care.
The researchers studied a database of 1.8 billion doctor visits in 2003 and 2004 and examined performance on 17 indicators of quality. The results were mediocre, according to Stanford.
"In essence, we found little difference in the quality of care being provided by physicians with electronic health record systems, compared to those without … Read more
Maybe it's an extension of our latently adolescent excitement over the pending Speed Racer movie, but we've been thinking a lot about TV shows from the '60s of late, especially of the sci-fi variety. So it was only a matter of time before we got around to full-length features from the era as well.
As others have noted, obvious comparisons can be made between the microscopic submarine in the 1966 movie Fantastic Voyage and a minuscule robot that's being developed by Israeli scientists. In both cases, the vehicle is designed to travel through the human bloodstream for … Read more
I don't have an image to show you of fullerenes (gotta love that name), but they are small. Too tiny for my digital camera. Each fullerene is a nanoparticle also known as "buckyball" and it contains about 60 carbon atoms. Those are arranged to form tiny hollow cages.
Now nanotechnologists at the Virginia Commonwealth University have used fullerenes to stop allergic reactions--not just treat allergy symptoms but prevent them and leave you with a clear head, which is more than you ever hoped for. The little carbon cages interrupt the basic process of the mast cells. … Read more
If you're really into robots, maybe it's time a robot got into you. Literally.
This miniature robotic prototype developed by researchers at the Ritsumeikan University and the Shiga University of Medical Science in Japan can be inserted into a patient's body through a small incision.
The doctors use prior MRI imaging of a patient as a sort of internal Google Map. Once it's in there, the robot can be controlled by doctors outside the body to capture images, take tissue samples, deliver medicine, and even perform minor surgical procedures.
As advanced as the robot is, it … Read more