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Tag Archives: Medical

WinkyMote Lets You Change Channels With The Blink Of An Eye

Winkymote

Complete paralysis is awful. Imagine having to somehow navigate the world without being able to move anything below the waist. Even watching TV is nearly impossible. But the WinkyMote, a project headed by Katia Vega, is a type of “second skin” makeup that integrates some circuitry and has allowed at least one quadriplegic to control his television. By placing it near the eyes and covering it with makeup, Felipe, a 33-year-old master student in Administration (who was paralyzed 13 years ago in a Jiujitsu accident) was able to turn the TV on and off, as well as to change channels, simply by combining various blinking commands. “Winkymote was prototyped with Clio, an arduino based microcontroller from Seeed Studio” and while it has achieved some really cool results, we can’t find any information about availability for any other similar patients.

[ Project Page ] VIA [ MedGadget ]

Swallow This Balloon And Lose Weight

obalon

You’re looking at the medical device called the Obalon. It’s a special balloon designed to be swallowed (prior to inflation, of course) and take up space in the stomach to accelerate the feeling of fullness for overweight patients. The procedure takes less than 15 minutes and doesn’t require sedation. You just swallow it in a capsule, and then an inflation catheter is used to fill it with Nitrogen gas. After reaching its full volume, the catheter is removed and the Obalon stays in place. Unlike other gastric balloons which are filled with saline, the fact that Nitrogen is used helps it stay afloat near the top of the stomach. Used in conjunction with lifestyle changes, the Obalon remains inside the stomach for up to 12 weeks, during which time clinical trials have shown a “potential 50.2 percent reduction in excess body weight, a potential reduction of 8.3 percent in total body weight and a 2.8 point reduction in BMI over the three month treatment period.”

Granted it’s not a miracle cure since the stomach doesn’t get a chance to shrink during treatment, but it is hoped that the simultaneous efforts to change diet and lifestyle will remain even after the Obalon is removed. It’s currently approved for use in the UK market, but is waiting on FDA approval for use stateside.

obalon-1

VIA [ Gizmag ]

Don’t Take A Selfie, Measure Your Cholesterol Level Instead

cholesterol-app

The selfie truly is the defining activity of the last few years; it is the one thing future historians are sure to note about human behaviour in the early 21st century. But with the development of the above device by researchers at Cornell university, you can use your phone’s camera for more than narcissistic self-indulgence: you can test for your cholesterol levels without going to a specialized laboratory. As long as you don’t mind drawing a bit of blood and putting it on a reagent strip, the device is then able to use your phone’s flash and camera to accurately measure cholesterol levels. This is something that normally would take expensive equipment and had to be performed by professionals. One day soon however, you might be able to perform these tests routinely at home and email the results to your physician for closer tracking.

There is no word on pricing or availability, but the researchers are also allegedly working on improving the device so that it may track vitamin D levels as well.

[ Full Research Paper ] VIA [ Mashable ]

Smart Glasses Allow Medical Personnel To See Through Your Skin

Evena-Eye-On-smart-glasses

If you’re in the hospital, you’re already pretty unhappy about whatever it is that got you there in the first place. And it adds insult to injury when the nurse tries to take blood, or insert an IV, and instead repeatedly stabs you in the arm because she can’t find a vein. A device called the Eyes-On™ Glasses System lets medical practitioners see right through your skin, for a clear view of the vasculature beneath.

Featuring a patented design that incorporates multi-spectral 3D imaging and wireless connectivity, Evena’s point-of-care Eyes-On system is the first vein detection device to deliver clear, anatomically accurate, real-time imaging in a wearable, easy-to-use, hands-free and cart-free system.

Evena’s Eyes-On Glasses include digital storage to enable easy verification and documentation of vein patency throughout a patient’s stay in the hospital, and telemedicine capability to share images remotely. The system also interfaces with hospital electronic medical records systems for seamless documentation.

Evena-Eye-On-smart-glasses-1

There is no word on price or availability, though we wouldn’t be surprised to see the system being used in hospitals in the near future.

[ Press Release ] VIA [ DamnGeeky ]

Car Mechanic Invents Device For Dramatically Safer Births

jp-birth1-articleLarge

Proving that ingenuity can spring from anywhere, a 59 year old Argentinian car mechanic has invented a device that can dramatically reduce the incidence of childbirth complications. It’s called the Odón Device (named after the inventor, Jorge Odón) and consists of a plastic bag within a lubricated plastic sleeve, which is then fitted around the baby’s head while it is still in the womb. After it’s inflated and has gripped the head, the handles can be used to safely pull the baby out. There’s no need to use hard instruments, which can often injure a child. As a matter of fact, current options kind of suck; you either have to use forceps (medspeak for ‘pliers’) or a suction cup that attaches to the head. Either of these in untrained hands can be disastrous, so the Odón Device provides a safer-to-use alternative.

And this is not just a quirky human-interest story that’s been picked up by the media. Jorge’s invention has been enthusiastically endorsed by the World Health Organisation as a “low cost instrument for assisted vaginal delivery”. Currently still undergoing testing, the Odón Device could be manufactured for as little as $50.

Odon-Device

[ NYTimes ] VIA [ MedGadget ]

ABC Syringes: No More Reused Syringes!

ABC Syringe

Every year, scores of people get infected with various diseases because they were injected using unsterile and reused syringes. It’s unfortunate but it happens more often than you think. Case in point: according to the World Health Organization, 5% of all new HIV cases, 32% of all Hepatitis B cases, and 40%of Hepatitis C cases are caused by unsafe injections.

Aiming to come up with safer, tamper-proof syringes is Dr. David Swann from the Huddersfield University in England. He designed the ABC Syringe, which comes in a nitrogen-filled pack, that has a special coating of ink in its barrel that turns bright red after 60 seconds of exposure to air. Apparently, the ink absorbs the carbon dioxide from the air, causing the ink to change in color.

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Liftware Spoon Lets Parkinson’s Patients Feed Themselves

Liftware Spoon

People with Parkinson’s often have a difficult time feeding themselves due to the tremors associated with the disease. In most cases, someone else has to feed them because it might cause injury or result in a mess. However, this might all soon change thanks to Lift Labs’ innovator Liftware Spoon that automatically tracks and compensates for shaking motions and tremors.

The spoon is equipped with sensors that have a high degree of sensitivity, so they can detect even the slightest tremor that’s made. It then moves in the other direction to cancel that tremor out. During testing, the Liftware was found to cancel out over 70 percent of these tremors, which is enough to allow those with Parkinson’s to feed themselves once more.

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Safe Cut Surgical Gloves Make Glove Removal Easy as Pie

Safe Cut Surgical Glove

 

I’m sure you’ve worn gloves several times in your lifetime. Wearing them is fine, but trying to take them off can sometimes turn into a pretty annoying task. This is especially true when you have sweaty hands and the rubber is sticking all over the insides of your palms, and you’re just flailing around trying to get them off and they just stubbornly stay put.

The solution? The Safe Cut Surgical Glove, which features simple addition to the design that makes a world of difference. Continue Reading

Support the Fight Against AIDS While You’re Sleeping

FightAIDS

You obviously don’t use your Android smartphone when you’re sleeping, so why not let scientists who are working to find a cure for AIDS use it instead?

FightAIDS@Home is a project that calls for the involvement of citizens all over the world. Scientists who are trying to find more efficient drugs that can be used to treat HIV need a supercomputer, which will cost them $1,000 an hour. Funding isn’t exactly unlimited, which is why the researchers found an alternative: making use of the computing power of thousands of devices that aren’t being used–because their owners are sleeping.

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