The Times ran an intriguing experiment on its Well blog yesterday: a medical problem-solving contest. The challenge, based on the story of a real girl who lives near Philadelphia, drew 1379 posted comments and closed this morning with publication of the answer. Dr. Lisa Sanders, who moderated the piece, says today that the first submitted […]
Since Watson won on Jeopardy, there’s been lots of talk of robots assuming doctors’ roles. Ten years into our future, machines with programmed empathy and nuanced diagnostic skills will solve diagnostic dilemmas, deduce optimal treatment and make us well. Yesterday I found a new Xtranormal video, this one crafted by Dr. Charles of his excellent […]
This morning I toured Google’s new Body Browser. The trip wasn’t as easy as I’d envisioned; I got sidetracked on my way, having to update my Web browser before entering. The site requires an advanced Web browser, like Chrome beta or Firefox 4.0, to accommodate 3-D graphics.
Update accomplished, I forged into Google-woman’s frame. (There is no man available, as yet.)
The word of the week appears on the front page of today’s New York Times in an article on a crowd-sourced response to WikiLeaks: “the Internet assaults underlined the growing reach of self-described “cyberanarchists,” antigovernment and anticorporate activists who have made an icon of Mr. Assange, a 39-year-old Australian.” You won’t find a cyberanarchist reference […]
This morning I visited my spine surgeon for a check-up. What’s nice is the feeling I have about his office staff: they’re pleasant, gentle people who seem always eager in their work, and that helps. I got big hugs from his nurse, an office manager and biller. Even the x-ray technician seemed glad to assist […]
A link to a video, the Too Informed Patient came my way several times lately. You can find the curious clip on NPR’s Marketplace site: The Too Informed Patient from Marketplace on Vimeo. — The skit depicts the interaction between a young man with a rash and his older physician. The patient is an informed […]
This post is intended mainly for medical bloggers, but it has applications elsewhere. It’s about links and uniform resource locators (URLs), terms that I didn’t fully appreciate until the last year or so. That’s because like most of my colleagues and readers, I grew up reading printed books, newspapers and magazines. Now, perhaps as much as 90 percent of the non-fiction I read is on-line.
The Web has a lot of advantages for readers – you can see multimedia presentations, or double-click to enlarge a graph of interest. What I think is best, though, is the third
“This caught my interest because it doesn’t diminish physicians’ autonomy,” Blumenthal said. It just enables them to make decisions for their patients in the context of additional, current information. “The end goal is not to adopt technology, but to improve care.”
As a patient who’s been there, under anesthesia more times than I care to remember, I can’t imagine anything much worse than knowing while I’m unconscious my doctor might be on-line or even just dictating tweets instead of concentrating on me, my arteries and veins and spine and…
There’s been a recent barrage of med-blog posts on the unhappy relationship between doctors and electronic communications. The first, a mainly reasonable rant by Dr. Wes* dated August 7, When The Doctor’s Always In, considers email in the context of unbounded pressure on physicians to avail themselves to their patients 24/7. That piece triggered at […]
MedlinePlus, a virtual superstore of medical information, is one of the most frequented health-related websites worldwide. The site, co-sponsored by the National Library of Medicine and the National Institutes of Health, is comprehensive and, with some exceptions (see below) relatively free of commercial bias. I find it a useful starting point for almost any health-related search…
Ten years ago, my colleagues and I squirmed in our swivel chairs when a few tech-savvy patients filed in bearing reams of articles they’d discovered, downloaded and printed for our perusal.
Some of us accepted these informational “gifts” warily, half-curious about what was out there and half-loathing the prospect of more reading. Quite a few complained about the changing informational dynamic between patients and their physicians, threatened by a perceived and perhaps real loss of control.
How a decade can make a difference. In 2008 over 140 million Americans…
This afternoon I found a Tweet from a colleague, a journalist who happens to be a mom in my community:
Tweet from SuSaw:
“RT @JenSinger: Hey, baby. What’s your blood type? Nothing against the Big Pink Machine… http://ow.ly/URkg
As a trained hematologist (blood doc), oncologist and breast cancer survivor, I couldn’t resist checking this out. Here’s what I discovered…
Yesterday, Dr. Pauline Chen reported in the New York Times on virtual visits, a little-used approach for providing care to patients hundreds or thousands of miles apart from their physicians.
Telemedicine depends on satellite technology and data transfer. It’s a theoretical and possibly real health benefit of the World Wide Web, that giant, not-new-anymore health resource that’s transforming medicine in more ways than we know.
Here’s my short list, culled from newsworthy developments that might improve health, reduce costs of care and better patients’ lives between now and 2020, starting this year: 1. “Real” Alternative Medicine. By this I don’t mean infinitely-diluted homeopathic solutions sold in fancy bottles at high prices, but real remedies extracted from nature and sometimes ancient […]
Last week I received an email from a former patient. He has hemochromatosis, an inherited disposition to iron overload. His body is programmed to take in excessive amounts of iron, which then might deposit in the liver, glands, heart and skin. He mentioned “some amazing videos on hematology and hemochromatosis and genetics” he’d discovered on YouTube.
This is the future of medicine, I realized. … Whether physicians want their patients to search the Internet for medical advice is beside the point. We’re there already, whether or not it’s good for us and whether what we find there is true.