Today, Simon who I have been writing about for weeks now got a big article in FastCompany about how crowdsourcing can be used for medical purposes and my story (when crowdsourced a diagnosis via Twitter) also got described. I don’t even mention a reporter from TIME magazine asked me more details about it today. Exciting times!
This isn’t the first attempt to crowdsource a medical diagnosis via the Internet. Patients do it all the time on medical message boards. A doctor made headlines two years ago when he crowdsourced a diagnosis on Twitter. And UCLA researchers have created agame to crowdsource malaria diagnoses.
Jamie Drummond crowdsourced it in the newest TED talk.
Bonus: Curesourcing: A Guide for Physicians and Medical Students
A few days ago, I described the medical mystery of a mother in details and how the husband and now more and more doctors try to help find the diagnosis through crowdsourcing. They created a wiki for listing the potential hypotheses so then anyone can leave comments on them easily.
And now here is a matrix of ruled out conditions to help doctors get a clear picture about what we have excluded so far. We hope to find a solution for this very special medical problem soon.
Last week, I described the medical mystery of a mother in details and how the husband and now more and more doctors try to help find the diagnosis through crowdsourcing.
They just created a wiki for listing the potential hypotheses so then anyone can leave comments on them easily.
They also published the graphs of seizure activity and noticed strong and consistent intervals. Any ideas for a resolution?
My readers know well that I’ve been speaking about the use of crowdsourcing in medicine and healthcare for years and I do this in practice every single day through my medical Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Friendfeed communities. Once I even managed to crowdsource a rare diagnosis through these networks. Now I turn to you again in order to solve a medical mystery of a mother.
In a nutshell, a postpartum mother with no seizure or high blood pressure history suddenly developing malignant high blood pressure plus a new onset seizure disorder of complex partial seizures. She is being treated at Stanford, but still there is no final diagnosis. Here is the Facebook page the husband created and the details:
In my layman’s language, we have this previously very healthy woman who has a difficult third pregnancy. She has preclampsia during her pregnancy. She delivers the baby and then her blood pressure does not normalize (as would be expected with a preclampsia patient) but her blood pressure proceeds to get worse–to the point were she has a high-blood pressure-induced eclamptic seizure in her sleep seven weeks after the birth of her baby. She then starts to gets partial complex seizures (the lip smacking kind) in her sleep; that happen every six or seven weeks. She’ll get these partial complex seizures for maybe seven nights in a row before they stop, only to have them return in another six weeks or so. This pattern of seizure clusters is pretty consistent. The patient has been extensively worked up at Stanford and other places, with everything coming back negative–except for a recent diagnosis of potential Lyme’s exposure. We have all these specialists that don’t know what to make of this very distinct profile–a postpartum mother with no seizure or high blood pressure history suddenly developing malignant high blood pressure plus a new onset seizure disorder of complex partial seizures–that cluster, are only nocturnal, and go dormant for six weeks before reappearing. Yes, the patient shows some Lyme’s exposure but the regular physicians at Stanford are just dismissive of a diagnosis of Lyme’s disease in general.
History of Present Illness is here.
Complete set of medical files are here.
At the recent Doctors 2.0 and You event in Paris, I gave a keynote about using crowdsourcing in medicine and healthcare. My two main examples were Webicina.com and The Social MEDia Course, but I also mentioned how I let the medical communities I’ve been building for years filter the information for me every single day (and I guess I do the same for them).
The information of over 300 medical journals, news sites and blogs gets into my filter every day and my main 4 communities (Google+, Facebook, Twitter and Friendfeed) help me find only the most important ones. It saves me an incredible amount of time as I don’t have to watch my channels article by article and also gives me a clear picture about which article is important that day which I should read.
It only works because I’ve spent years building these communities, I have relationship based on trust and respect with the majority of the members and followers. I know them, I know how they filter news and as a community, they do an amazing job for me. Again, by sharing relevant news and being active and helpful in the community, I believe I do the same for them.
This is how crowdsourcing should help medical professionals save time and effort by filtering automatically the enormous amount of information every day.
Two more related articles:
You may remember when I wrote about a self-edited directory of European healthcare professionals on Twitter which was launched by Andrew Spong after I tweeted that I’m the only European doctor in the top 25 of the global list of doctors on Twitter. Here is the interactive map version.
This project is getting more and more attention and hopefully this movement will result in a very useful list of European medical professionals being active on Twitter.
Now over 60 medical professionals are listed and the list is getting bigger and more detailed every day.
This was one of my crowdsourcing examples in my keynote at the recent Doctors 2.0 and You.