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Posts from the ‘Health’ Category

New Book: “Trackers: How Technology is helping us Monitor & Improve our Health”

I’ve been in contact with Richard MacManus for a long time, actually since he worked at ReadWriteWeb. I witnessed the whole process from him coming up with the idea of writing the book, Trackers, to actually finishing it. Then he kindly shared the manuscript with me before publication and I can tell you this is going to be the ultimate book when it comes to wearable devices and health management.

Do not miss it!

Self-tracking is the practice of measuring and monitoring your health, activities or diet through technologies such as smartphone apps, wearables and personal genomics, empowering you to take control of your day to day health. Richard MacManus explains the benefits and risks of self-tracking and looks at:

  • What exactly is being tracked

  • The tools and techniques being used

  • The best practices of early adopters

  • How self-tracking is revolutionizing the health and wellness industries

  • How the medical establishment is adapting to these new trends

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Interview with a Nokia Sensing Challenge Finalist Making Blood Analysis Available Remotely

When the XPRIZE Foundation named the 11 finalists for the Nokia Sensing XCHALLENGE, I had a chance to interview a team in which I see great potentials. Here is my short talk with the French team behind ARCHIMEJ TECHNOLOGY, a start-up led by co-founder Francisco Vega, developing technology focused on making blood analysis available remotely at an affordable price.

1) Can you tell me more details about the technology behind your solution?

I’m afraid I’m not going to be able to say much on that topic; everything is confidential for the moment. What I can tell you is that we have completely reimagined the linear process by which the measurement/analysis is performed today, to transform it into a complex multi-factor analysis, which paradoxically simplifies the entire process of testing.

There is 3 important parts in our technology:
– The technology that holds and conditions the sample for the measurement (sample = a drop of blood from finger-stick);
– The technology that performs the measurement (called Spectroscopy 2.0®);
– The technology that analyses the information measured and interprets it in test results easy to understand by the user.

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2) How can it be compared to Theranos which has similar goals?

What Theranos does is amazing! ..I mean, being able to perform hundreds (even maybe thousands) of tests with only a tiny volume of blood is already a huge step from anything existing.

What we do is taking this concept and trying to push it even further. We will not perform hundreds of tests (or at least not for now, maybe in the future), but for the moment we focus on those the most used, the most important ones and in making them available to people directly in their homes.

Our solution, Beta-Bioled, is a comprehensive and integrated platform that allows doctors and patients to get a blood-chemistry panel (10 to 20 tests) from 1 drop of blood, anywhere, in real time, for less than 2 dollars.

This idea of democratization of blood analysis, this.. new way for everybody to have access to medical relevant diagnostic is possible because of 3 factors: the mobility (or portability), the simplicity of use and the cost. If you miss one of those 3 factors the impact will not be the same, you will still be targeting a specific group of people or an elite..

3) How does your innovation contribute to the process of breaking down the “ivory tower” of medicine and making even blood analysis accessible to patients?

Imagine that you could monitor your heart, your liver, your kidneys, your lipids profile.. as if you were in a hospital but from the comfort of your home, with a fast and simple process and paying less in a month that what you pay for a coffee every morning.

It will be a huge step in the democratization of healthcare. Instead of going to check your health status when you are feeling unwell, you could anticipate and prevent. It would change the whole healthcare paradigm: less urgencies, and aggressive medication but smoother preventive treatments or lifestyle adjustments.

..Well this is exactly what we do; playing our part in the switch from industrial medicine that treats the symptoms to a personal preventing medicine.

Of course this transition is a process, and that’s why we are prepared to address each step of the transition, in order to speed it up.
– For existing medical facilities, our solution fits the needs of both patients and physician by reducing clinic overload, streamlining the process of performing a blood panel and receiving results instantly and more importantly, onsite.
– For emergency services and NGOs, it becomes an on-the-ground, easy to use ally to quickly make decisions and prioritize treatments.
– For medically underserved regions, either low medical infrastructure or low density of population, it becomes a bridge able to obtain and connect meaningful data to distant medical experts.
– Finally, for the elderly, and more generally for the chronic patients, who intend for more than 20% of all patients in the wealthy country, it brings them the so wanted autonomy and comfort.

Top 10 Science Fiction Movies About the Future of Medicine

As a science fiction movie geek, I collected those 10 movies that give a good picture about what we can expect to see in the next years in the future of medicine.

Please share your favorite ones and read more about such movies in “The Guide to the Future of Medicine“.

Here are the movies described in the video:

  1. The Fifth Element
  2. Gattaca
  3. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
  4. Inception
  5. Prometheus
  6. Robot & Frank
  7. Cloud Atlas
  8. Elysium
  9. The Zero Theorem
  10. Lucy

My New Book, The Guide to the Future of Medicine, is For Free as an E-Book Now!

Download the Kindle version of my new book, The Guide to the Future of Medicine, for free between the 16th and 18th of December! It has already made it to the top 100 overall Kindles on Amazon. If you don’t have a Kindle, you can still download and read it online at cloud.amazon.com.

I cannot wait to hear what you think about the book and those 22 trends & technologies that will shape the future! Download here!

Here is the description:

A few short years ago, it would have been hard to imagine that exoskeletons could enable paralyzed people to walk again; that billions of people would rely on social media for information; and that the supercomputer Watson would be a key player in medical decision-making. Perhaps more than in any other field, technology has transformed medicine and healthcare in ways that a mere decade ago would have sounded like pure science fiction.

From his unique vantage as a trained physician, researcher, and medical futurist, Dr. Bertalan Mesko examines these developments and the many more down the pipeline. His aim is to assess how the hand of technology can continue to provide the dose of humanity that is crucial to effective healthcare. The Guide to the Future of Medicine: Technology and the Human Touch is his incisive, illuminating roundup of the technologies and trends that will shape the future of medicine.

Patients, medical professionals, and any healthcare stakeholder will find an eye opening, reassuring roadmap to tomorrow’s potential in this accessible and fact-based book. By preparing for the inevitable waves of change, you can make informed decisions about how technology will shape your own well-being.

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Top 5 Wearable Trackers And Handheld Devices Measuring How And What You Eat

For years, I’ve been measuring plenty of health parameters and vital signs about myself to make sure I truly live a healthly life but tracking what I eat and my eating habits has been a real problem. Although, I have been using a few trackers and have had a chance to try or see some other devices which will revolutionize the way we eat every day. Let’s see the top 5 wearable trackers and handheld devices.

1) Liftware: Designed by Lift Labs which was acquired by Google, Liftware is a stabilizing handle and a selection of attachments that include a soup spoon, everyday spoon, and fork. Liftware is specially designed to improve the lives of those with Essential Tremor, Parkinson’s Disease, or other motion disorders.

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2) HAPI fork: Eating too fast leads to poor digestion and poor weight control. The HAPIfork, powered by Slow Control, is an electronic fork that helps you monitor and track your eating habits. It also alerts you with the help of indicator lights and gentle vibrations when you are eating too fast.

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3) Tellspec: The world’s first handheld device able to scan food so consumers know more about the ingredients before they buy or eat the food. TellSpec brings together spectroscopy and a unique mathematical algorithm in a revolutionary system that can analyze the chemical composition of foods.

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4) BitBite: BitBite is a wearable device meant to track, analyze and change the way you eat. When you slow down, chew more and eat at regular intervals you’ll be improving your nutrition, feel better and shed those extra pounds.

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5) Automatic Ingestion Monitor: Known as the Automatic Ingestion Monitor (AIM), the 3D-printed prototype device is worn over one ear. Among other things, it incorporates a motion sensor, a tiny camera, and a Bluetooth transmitter. When the user eats, the sensor detects the distinctive chewing motion of their jaw – it’s able to tell the difference between that motion, and those that accompany activities such as talking. Once AIM is triggered by the chewing, its camera takes photos of what the user is eating.

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See how some of these work in action and how they could be used to improve eating habits in the newest video of The Medical Futurist Youtube channel. And please let me know if you know about other devices.

Why Is Measuring Data About Your Condition Worth It?

This is not a new story but I’m always fascinated when I read it again and again. Doug Kanter measured data about his life, his condition, blood sugar levels and every details that could have been relevant.

Later, he published his findings and what he learnt during the process. Amazing read and a perfect proof for those against measuring health data as patients that this can lead to better health and disease management. After some time, he realized that his average blood sugar levels became lower due to self-management.

Doug released a service, Databetes, to help other patients with diabetes better manage their condition.

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Fitness Band Named Best Christmas Gift in Sweden

The Trade Union, an interest organisation for retail trade, in Sweden named fitness activity trackers the Christmas Gift of the year. Isn’t it a good sign of health management becoming trendy?

Fitness armbands are set to be this year’s hottest Christmas gift, according to Swedish retail researchers HUI Research. The device was unveiled by HUI as 2014’s Christmas Present of the Year (Årets julklapp) on Tuesday. The company expects them to be a big seller in the lead up to Christmas. “The health trend is going strong; it’s trendy to be active,” said Lena Larsson, CEO at HUI Research. “Fitness armbands encourage daily exercise and are a lifestyle product for tech-savvy fitness enthusiasts.”

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