3 new ways technology is helping to advance medicine

Imaging Cameras improving cancer surgery

Every year, 14 million people are diagnosed with cancer; of those, around eight million will die. Cancer is one of the leading causes of death worldwide; across the globe, doctors and scientists are fighting to reduce the number of cancer deaths by detecting cancer early and promoting new ways of battling it. In the past, imaging technologies such as radiography, magnetic resonance imaging and computed tomography have proved vital in the fight against cancer, helping doctors to diagnose the disease quickly to increase the chance of recovery. Now, near-infrared fluorescence (NRF) has emerged as a new, powerful imaging tool in the battle against cancer. NRF imaging is used during surgery to enable surgeons to easily distinguish between healthy tissue and cancerous tissue. Surgery is a highly effective method of treating cancer patients, but its success rate depends largely on how much of the cancer is removed; if cancer cells remain in the body after surgery, the surgery’s success rate is greatly diminished. Advocates of NRF hope the technique will give surgeons greater visibility of cancer margins and thereby increase their ability to precisely remove cancerous tissue. Companies such as andor.com are researching how we can implement these types of treatments and imaging cameras across the globe to potentially improve survival rates and reduce our reliance on radiotherapy.

Robotic checkups to provide people with access to the best healthcare

For many people across the globe, getting any form of healthcare is difficult. As we become more and more technologically advanced, it’s inevitable that our healthcare systems will change and improve due to these new technological breakthroughs.

One particular way that is seeing a huge rise is the use of robots to give people outside of big cities access to the best doctors. This type of technology is a cost-effective way to connect clinics with people in more rural areas. These types of robots have been used for quite a while, but a change in technology has allowed these robots to patrol hospital halls more regularly, doing routine checkups and rounds on a daily basis.

THE RP-VITA remote presence robot was produced jointly by iRobot Corp and InTouch Heath and is the first autonomous navigation remote-presence robot to receive clearance for hospital use.


(Image Source: InTouchHealth.com)


 Ending the pain of Diabetes care with needle-less treatment

Although it may not seem like a big issue, being able to get rid of needles in the treatment of diabetes would be a huge step forward. Millions of people across the globe suffer from diabetes and a large portion of them have to use needles in their everyday treatment.

Treatment brings the constant need to draw blood to test glucose levels as well as injecting insulin each day. Removing the need for needles would literally take away the pain for diabetes sufferers. Prick treatments are the more popular these days, but that doesn’t remove the need to inject the actual insulin.

A company in the USA, called Echo Therapeutics, are developing a technology that would replace injections with a patch. The company are working towards implementing a “transdermal biosensor” that will analyse the blood through the skin without having to use a prick or a needle. Although a way in which insulin can be given without the need of a needle has yet to be developed, reducing the amount of needles needed on a daily basis is a good start.

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