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Mobile Health: How Mobile Phones Support Health Care
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Top 5 emerging medical technologies to watch in 2014 | Impact Lab

Top 5 emerging medical technologies to watch in 2014 | Impact Lab | Mobile Health: How Mobile Phones Support Health Care | Scoop.it

Robotic check-ups

Medical technology companies are focusing more than ever on products that deliver cheaper, faster, more efficient patient care. They are also making inroads with U.S. Food & Drug Administration regulators to re-engineer the complex review and approval process for new medical devices.

 

 

Many in the industry have long felt overly burdened by what they consider to be an unnecessarily complex approval process. Critics claim it impedes innovation and delays the availability of better health care. To change that perception, the FDA last year announced a new Medical Device Innovation Consortium (MDIC) charged with simplifying the process of designing and testing new technologies. With input from industry, government, and other nonprofit organizations, public-private MDIC will prioritize the regulatory science needs of the medical device community and fund projects to streamline the process.

“By sharing and leveraging resources, MDIC may help industry to be better equipped to bring safe and effective medical devices to market more quickly and at a lower cost,” says Jeffrey Shuren, M.D., J.D., director of the FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health.

As the regulators, politicians, and corporate executives hash out these details, industry engineers and scientists continue to push through new ideas for improving and managing human health. Every year, industry observers like the Cleveland Clinic and the medical device trade press single out their favorite technology trends. These thought leaders agree that today’s best technologies strike a balance between reducing the overall cost of medical care and increasing safety and survival rates—and isn’t that what health care reform is all about?

Here are five emerging technologies to watch in the year ahead.

1. Cutting Back on Melanoma Biopsies

With the most deadly form of skin cancer, melanoma, a huge number of dangerous-looking moles are actually harmless, but has always been impossible to know for sure without an invasive surgical biopsy. Today dermatologists have new help in making the right call — a handheld tool approved by the FDA for multispectral analysis of tissue morphology. The MelaFind optical scanner is not for definitive diagnosis but rather to provide additional information a doctor can use in determining whether or not to order a biopsy. The goal is to reduce the number of patients left with unnecessary biopsy scars, with the added benefit of eliminating the cost of unnecessary procedures. The MelaFind technology (MELA Sciences, Irvington, NY) uses missile navigation technologies originally paid for the Department of Defense to optically scan the surface of a suspicious lesion at 10 electromagnetic wavelengths. The collected signals are processed using heavy-duty algorithms and matched against a registry of 10,000 digital images of melanoma and skin disease.

2. Electronic Aspirin

For people who suffer from migraines, cluster headaches, and other causes of chronic, excruciating head or facial pain, the “take two aspirins and call me in the morning” method is useless. Doctors have long associated the most severe, chronic forms of headache with the sphenopalatine ganglion (SPG), a facial nerve bundle, but haven’t yet found a treatment that works on the SPG long-term. A technology under clinical investigation at Autonomic Technologies, Inc., (Redwood City, CA) is a patient-powered tool for blocking SPG signals at the first sign of a headache. The system involves the permanent implant of a small nerve stimulating device in the upper gum on the side of the head normally affected by headache. The lead tip of the implant connects with the SPG bundle, and when a patient senses the onset of a headache, he or she places a handheld remote controller on the cheek nearest the implant. The resulting signals stimulate the SPG nerves and block the pain-causing neurotransmitters.

3. Needle-Free Diabetes Care

Diabetes self-care is a pain—literally. It brings the constant need to draw blood for glucose testing, the need for daily insulin shots and the heightened risk of infection from all that poking. Continuous glucose monitors and insulin pumps are today’s best options for automating most of the complicated daily process of blood sugar management – but they don’t completely remove the need for skin pricks and shots. But there’s new skin in this game. Echo Therapeutics (Philadelphia, PA) is developing technologies that would replace the poke with a patch. The company is working on a transdermal biosensor that reads blood analytes through the skin without drawing blood. The technology involves a handheld electric-toothbrush-like device that removes just enough top-layer skin cells to put the patient’s blood chemistry within signal range of a patch-borne biosensor. The sensor collects one reading per minute and sends the data wirelessly to a remote monitor, triggering audible alarms when levels go out of the patient’s optimal range and tracking glucose levels over time.

4. Robotic Check-Ups

A pillar of health reform is improving access to the best health care for more people. Technology is a cost-effective and increasingly potent means to connect clinics in the vast and medically underserved rural regions of the United States with big city medical centers and their specialists. Telemedicine is well established as a tool for triage and assessment in emergencies, but new medical robots go one step further—they can now patrol hospital hallways on more routine rounds, checking on patients in different rooms and managing their individual charts and vital signs without direct human intervention. The RP-VITA Remote Presence Robot produced jointly by iRobot Corp. and InTouch Health is the first such autonomous navigation remote-presence robot to receive FDA clearance for hospital use. The device is a mobile cart with a two-way video screen and medical monitoring equipment, programmed to maneuver through the busy halls of a hospital.

5. A Valve Job with Heart

The Sapien transcatheter aortic valve is a life-saving alternative to open-heart surgery for patients who need new a new valve but can’t endure the rigors of the operation. Manufactured by Edwards Life Sciences (Irvine, CA), the Sapien has been available in Europe for some time but is only now finding its first use in U.S. heart centers—where it is limited only to the frailest patients thus far. The Sapien valve is guided through the femoral artery by catheter from a small incision near the grown or rib cage. The valve material is made of bovine tissue attached to a stainless-steel stent, which is expanded by inflating a small balloon when correctly placed in the valve space. A simpler procedure that promises dramatically shorter hospitalizations is bound to have a positive effect on the cost of care.

Via ASME


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5 Health Tech Trends to Watch in 2014

5 Health Tech Trends to Watch in 2014 | Mobile Health: How Mobile Phones Support Health Care | Scoop.it

If 2013 was the year of wearables and health apps, what’s on tap for 2014?

 

Here are five exciting health tech trends to keep an eye on for the new year.

 

1. Data in the Doctor’s OfficeAccording to Pew Research, 21% of Americans already use some form of technology to track their health data, and as the market for wearable devices and health apps grows, so too will the mountain of data about our behaviors and vitals. Next year, we may see more of this data incorporated into our day-to-day medical care.

2. Smart Clothes

If a wristband or clip-on tracker isn’t part of your look, there’s hope for you in 2014, because a new wave of wearable smart garments will be hitting the stores next year. In fact, market research company Markets and Markets expects sales of smart clothes and fabrics to reach $2.03 billion by 2018.

 

3. Augmented NutritionOf course, if you want to fit into the latest smart fashion, you might need to keep better tabs on what you’re eating. We’ve already seen popular apps such as Fooducate make things easy by letting you scan the barcodes on packaged foods to gather nutrition data. In 2014, we’ll see new technologies that take even more of the guesswork out of counting calories. 4. Virtual House Calls

Virtual house calls also just got a big boost with the recent launch of Google Helpouts, a new marketplace for getting personalized help over live video chat. Although it’s still early days for the new service, you can already browse the Google Helpouts Health marketplace for medical advice, mental health issues, nutrition counseling, weight loss and more. You can even get wellness advice for your pets.

 

5. Health Rewards

If looking and feeling good isn’t enough of a payoff, how about getting paid for getting healthy?

 


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Pere Florensa's curator insight, December 13, 2013 4:22 AM

En nuestro blog, nosotros nos atrevimos a hacer nuestras predicciones sobre salud y marketing:

http://healthyadvertising.es/tendencias-del-marketing-farmaceutico-2014/

Sky Sirewest's curator insight, December 18, 2013 11:44 AM

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Ekaterina's curator insight, December 18, 2013 8:59 PM

5 Health Tech Trends to Watch in 2014

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Sensors to create your health feed

Sensors to create your health feed | Mobile Health: How Mobile Phones Support Health Care | Scoop.it
Walter De Brouwer of Scanadu forecasts how advances in sensing will give access to our personal health feed and transform healthcare.

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Rowan Norrie's curator insight, April 8, 2013 3:44 AM

There has been a great deal of discussion about the practicalities and issues surrounding creating a feed of your health data. This article is a useful discussion on these points.

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The Top Medtech Trends of 2013 | Qmed

The Top Medtech Trends of 2013 | Qmed | Mobile Health: How Mobile Phones Support Health Care | Scoop.it
Qmed (formerly Medical Device Link) is the world's first completely prequalified supplier directory and news source for medical device OEMs. Find medical device suppliers and IVD suppliers who are FDA-registered, ISO 13485- and ISO 9001-certified.

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Glasses That Let Nurses Get Under Your Skin | Qmed

Glasses That Let Nurses Get Under Your Skin | Qmed | Mobile Health: How Mobile Phones Support Health Care | Scoop.it
Qmed (formerly Medical Device Link) is the world's first completely prequalified supplier directory and news source for medical device OEMs. Find medical device suppliers and IVD suppliers who are FDA-registered, ISO 13485- and ISO 9001-certified.

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Marisa Maiocchi's curator insight, December 7, 2013 11:00 AM

Wow, suena muy bien!  Seguramente, habrá muchos pacientes agradecidos! El asunto, pienso, es quién va a comprar estas antiparras para enfermeros. ¿Los profesionales de enfermería, los hospitales, clínicas...???