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Google Glass to help patients in remote areas

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Source: Google images
Source: Google images
Source: Google images

New York: Google Glass may be used to effectively extend bedside consults to distant healthcare facilities such as community and rural hospitals to diagnose and manage patients, researchers suggest.

“Glass is positioned perfectly as an emergency medicine telemedical device. It is small, hands free and portable, so you can bring it right to the bedside and have a real-time specialist with you when you need one,” said Peter R. Chai from University of Massachusetts medical school.

Traditional telemedicine devices usually consist of large desktop or laptop computers affixed to a big cart that has to be rolled from one exam room to another exam room.

This limits both access and functionality in a busy emergency room setting.

Through the glass, the physicians can stream video of an exam, take and enlarge photos and consult with remote specialists.

In the study, emergency medicine residents at UMass Memorial Medical Centre performed 18 toxicology consults with Google Glass.

Physicians wearing Google Glass evaluated the patients at bedside while a secure video feed was sent to the toxicology supervising consultant. The supervising consultant then guided the resident through text messages displayed on the Glass.

With Google Glass, consulting toxicologists were more confident in diagnosing specific toxidromes.

Additional data collected showed that the use of Google Glass also changed management of patient care in more than half of the cases seen.

Specifically, six of those patients received antidotes they otherwise would not have.

“Placing an expert at the virtual bedside of the patient has huge advantages. It brings a specialist to patients that might not otherwise have access to that kind of expertise,” Chai said.

Because Google Glass is relatively unobtrusive to patients, can be operated hands free and is extremely portable, it has a distinct advantage over traditional telemedicine platforms,” he added.

The study was published in the Journal of Medical Toxicology.

(IANS)

Next Story

New Sleeping Pill Can Help Patients Wake up in Response to Threat

However, more studies on humans are needed to confirm DORA safety and efficacy, they noted

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Pills (representational Image), Pixabay

Japanese scientists have shown that a new class of sleeping pill that preserves the ability to wake in response to a threat, unlike the commonly prescribed drugs that muffles a sleeping brain’s “intruder alert”.

Even during sleep the brain continuously processes sensory information, waking us if it detects a threat. But the most widely prescribed class of sleeping pills, known as benzodiazepines, makes us less likely to rouse in response to sensory input.

The findings showed that millions prescribed on these sleeping pills would sleep through a fire alarm as someone vacuuming next to their bed.

 However, the new class of drugs called dual orexin receptor antagonists (DORAs) more selectively targeted the brain’s sleep or wake pathways, which gives them safety advantages over benzodiazepines, said researchers from the Kagoshima University.

These include a reduced “hangover effect”, with DORAs less likely to affect driving ability the day after use.

“Benzodiazepines stimulate the widespread brain receptor GABA-A, which makes us sleepy but also suppresses off-target brain areas – including the ‘gatekeeper’ that decides which sensory inputs to process,” explained author Tomoyuki Kuwaki, Professor at the varsity.

Contraception, Men
New sleeping pill can help patients wake up in response to threat.

In the study, published in Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience journal, mice that were given the new experimental hypnotic drug DORA-22 wake as quickly when threatened as drug-free sleepers — and then fall back asleep as quickly as ones given standard sleeping pills, once the threat is gone.

While DORA-22 allows mice to wake to a threat, it still helps them sleep.

Thus, the selectivity of DORAs could make them a safer alternative during sleep as well — by allowing the brain’s sensory gatekeeper to stay vigilant to threats, the researchers said.

Also Read- Here’s What Causes Cancer in Children

However, more studies on humans are needed to confirm DORA safety and efficacy, they noted.

“Although it remains to be seen whether DORAs have the same properties when used in humans, our study provides important and promising insight into the safety of these hypnotics,” Kuwaki said. (IANS)