2019 has brought about many great medical innovations, with technologies such as virtual reality, artificial intelligence, 3D printing, and various others having significant applications in healthcare. As the year comes to a close, DocWire News has compiled some of the top medical innovations that have emerged this year.
Recent work has found virtual reality (VR) to be effective in building balance skills in patients with Parkinson’s disease. This system successfully improved patient’s obstacle negotiation and balance, as well as their confidence in moving around in their environment, according to their findings published in Experimental Biology.
The researchers utilized VR to create a virtual training system that provides a controlled environment in which the patients can refine their balance and muscle control when walking. The patients step over obstacles that appear in front of them while walking on a treadmill, with obstacles getting progressively larger as the patient becomes comfortable with the course.
A collaborative team of researchers from Israel, Latvia, China, France, and the US have recently created an AI system that detects diseases from exhaled breath. In their study, the scientists found the device successfully detected 17 diseases with 86% accuracy.
Led by Professor Hassam Haick of Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, the team collected breath samples from 1,404 participants that were either healthy or had one of 17 diseases. Among these diseases were lung cancer, colorectal cancer, head and neck cancer, ovarian cancer, bladder cancer, prostate cancer, kidney cancer, gastric cancer, Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, irritable bowel syndrome, idiopathic Parkinson’s, atypical Parkinson ISM, multiple sclerosis, pulmonary hypertension, pre-eclampsia toxemia, and chronic kidney disease.
Current Health’s artificial intelligence (AI) wearable device that measures multiple vital signs has recently received FDA-clearance for patients to use at home. In February, the Edinburgh, Scotland-based company received clearance for the AI-enabled device in monitoring patients while in the hospital, but this recent approval means it can now be used between doctor visits at home too.
The wireless device, Current, measures a patient’s pulse, respiration, oxygen saturation, temperature and mobility. Current provides physicians with real-time updates regarding their patient’s health, allowing them to handle complications promptly. The technology utilizes machine learning to analyze the data it collects to detect problematic changes in data.