Medscape editor-in-chief on 5 industry-altering technologies

Written by Megan Wood | December 19, 2016 | Print  |

Medscape's Editor-in-Chief, Eric Topol, MD, shared some technologies he believes will impact medicine and greatly benefit patients.

1. Artificial intelligence. More than 90 startups are currently developing AI applications for healthcare, and the powerhouse companies are also taking notice through investments, including IBM, Apple, Google and Microsoft. AI technology has the capacity to accurately interpret pathology slides and X-rays, among other abilities.  


2. Wearable sensors. Companies are taking wearables a step further, developing sensor technology with "flexible, stretchable, printable and even battery-less characteristics," said Dr. Topol. The advancements are also offering enhanced tracking of chemistries and the environment.


3. Virtual Reality. Proven to decrease falls as well as help with pain, phobias and posttraumatic stress disorder, virtual reality has made a name for itself in healthcare. Providers are also leveraging virtual reality in the operating room, as simulations for surgery practice. 


4. Microfluidic technology for lab tests. Despite the Theranos mishap, microfluidics and colorimetrics technology have the ability to produce accurate blood tests with a drop of blood. Dr. Topol noted the technology can offer cheap, fast and accurate assays, highlighting San Diego-based Genalyte's work.


5. Rapid diagnoses technology. Cost-effective and quick diagnosis of infections diseases at the point-of-care is becoming a reality. Dr. Topole mentioned Imperial College Londo's disposable USB memory stick, which has the ability to identify HIV viral levels from one drop of blood.


Read here for five more tech advances Dr. Topol highlights.


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