HealthTap

Getting Medical Advice Is Often Just A Tap Away
October 18, 2014
http://www.npr.org/2014/10/18/357233530/getting-medical-advice-is-often-just-a-tap-away

https://www.healthtap.com

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Contact lens tracks glucose in tears

years of research remain to see if such a system is medically viable

By Tracking Sugar In Tears, Contact Lens Offers Hope For Diabetics
January 16, 2014
http://www.npr.org/blogs/alltechconsidered/2014/01/16/263161180/smart-contact-lens-might-one-day-let-diabetics-check-blood-sugar

“At this point, we have functional prototypes,” said Brian Otis, the project lead at Google X. “We have integrated circuits that have been miniaturized to the point where they look like a piece of glitter integrated inside the soft contact lens material.”

The smart lens consists of this glitter-fleck-sized wireless computer chip as well as a microscopically small glucose sensor and an antenna thinner than a human hair. All of this is embedded between two layers of soft-contact lens material.

“We have a glucose sensor that has to be much more sensitive — because the concentration of glucose in tears is much lower than the concentration in blood. We’ve also created a way of tying all of these technologies together in a flexible platform,” Otis said — so flexible and soft that you could slip it over your eye.

This device is powered by harvesting radio waves from the air.
A minute capacitor harvests RF power and creates a little bit of static electric charge on the chip. The chip itself uses just one microwatt of power to operate. That’s one one-millionth of the amount of power required by your phone.

FDA Approves TMS to Treat Migraine Pain

FDA Approves First Device to Treat Migraine Pain
December 13, 2013
http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/817831

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) today allowed marketing of the Cerena Transcranial Magnetic Stimulator (TMS; eNeura Therapeutics http://www.eneura.com), the first device approved to relieve pain caused by migraine headache with aura.

The device is used by prescription after onset of pain associated with migraine with aura.
Using both hands, the patient holds the device to the back of the head and, pressing a button, releases a pulse of magnetic energy that stimulates the occipital cortex, stopping or reducing the pain associated with this type of migraine.

Results showed that nearly 38% of patients using the TMS device were pain-free 2 hours after using the device vs 17% of control patients. After 24 hours, nearly 34% of treated patients were pain-free vs 10% of the control group.

Deep brain stimulation in Parkinson disease.

Adaptive deep brain stimulation in advanced Parkinson disease.
Ann Neurol. 2013 Sep;74(3):449-57.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23852650
Little S, et al.
Nuffield Department of Clinical Neurosciences, University of Oxford, Oxford.

OBJECTIVE:
Brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) could potentially be used to interact with pathological brain signals to intervene and ameliorate their effects in disease states. Here, we provide proof-of-principle of this approach by using a BCI to interpret pathological brain activity in patients with advanced Parkinson disease (PD) and to use this feedback to control when therapeutic deep brain stimulation (DBS) is delivered. Our goal was to demonstrate that by personalizing and optimizing stimulation in real time, we could improve on both the efficacy and efficiency of conventional continuous DBS.

METHODS:
We tested BCI-controlled adaptive DBS (aDBS) of the subthalamic nucleus in 8 PD patients. Feedback was provided by processing of the local field potentials recorded directly from the stimulation electrodes. The results were compared to no stimulation, conventional continuous stimulation (cDBS), and random intermittent stimulation. Both unblinded and blinded clinical assessments of motor effect were performed using the Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale.

RESULTS:
Motor scores improved by 66% (unblinded) and 50% (blinded) during aDBS, which were 29% (p = 0.03) and 27% (p = 0.005) better than cDBS, respectively. These improvements were achieved with a 56% reduction in stimulation time compared to cDBS, and a corresponding reduction in energy requirements (p < 0.001). aDBS was also more effective than no stimulation and random intermittent stimulation.

INTERPRETATION:
BCI-controlled DBS is tractable and can be more efficient and efficacious than conventional continuous neuromodulation for PD.

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A Novel Brain-Computer Interface Approach to Deep Brain Stimulation for Parkinson’s Disease
October 31, 2013
S. Andrew Josephson, M.D.
Department of Neurology, UCSF, San Francisco, USA
http://www.accessmedicine.com/updatesContent.aspx?aid=1002060
Related To:  Chapter 372. Parkinson’s Disease and Other Movement Disorders

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Deep brain stimulation hinders Parkinson’s for ten years and counting
08 Aug 2011
http://blogs.nature.com/spoonful/2011/08/deep_brain_stimulation_hinders.html

‘Paying Till It Hurts’: Why American Health Care Is So Pricey

‘Paying Till It Hurts’: Why American Health Care Is So Pricey    
August 07, 2013
http://www.npr.org/2013/08/07/209585018/paying-till-it-hurts-why-american-health-care-is-so-pricey

It costs $13,660 for an American to have a hip replacement in Belgium; in the U.S., it’s closer to $100,000.

the American way of birth is the costliest in the world

costs for the same procedure can vary so much within the U.S. — by thousands of dollars, in some cases — depending on where it’s being performed.

Before becoming a journalist, Rosenthal trained as a doctor and worked in the emergency room of New York Hospital, now part of New York-Presbyterian Hospital.

On joint-makers keeping prices high
“You would think that if five different companies were making candy bars, that would drive the price of candy bars lower.
But if five different companies are making joints and trying to sell them at $10,000 a piece, it’s really in no one’s interest to say, ‘Hey, guess what guys? I’m going to sell mine for $1,000 because that’s what it really costs me to make it.’
Because then everyone loses money; the whole industry kind of implodes.”

financial model

billing practices

===============

related articles:

http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2014/08/03/337071268/two-doctors-weigh-whether-to-accept-obamacare-plans

Patients Can Pay A High Price For ER Convenience
August 13, 2013
http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2013/08/13/211411828/patients-can-pay-a-high-price-for-er-convenience

Obamacare: People With Disabilities Face Complex Choices
August 13, 2013
http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2013/08/13/210481505/obamacare-people-with-disabilities-face-complex-choices

The effects of DBS on the motor symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease

The effects of DBS on the motor symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease
Jun 12, 2013
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uBh2LxTW0s0
Andrew was diagnosed with Early Onset Parkinson’s Disease in 2009 when he was 35 years old.
He lives with his wife and two children in Auckland, New Zealand. In November 2012 and February 2013 he underwent a surgical procedure, Deep Brain Stimulation surgery, to help control his motor symptoms.
This has been hugely beneficial to his quality of life. He is the author of a blog youngandshaky.com which he created to raise awareness of the effects of Parkinson’s Disease. This is his experience of how DBS has helped him and in the usual manner, results may vary.

The Man With A ‘Battery Operated Brain’
by Robert Krulwich
June 25, 2013
http://www.npr.org/blogs/krulwich/2013/06/25/195521917/the-man-with-a-battery-operated-brain

http://youngandshaky.com

Patients Crusade For Access To Their Medical Device Data

Patients Crusade For Access To Their Medical Device Data
May 28, 2012
http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2012/05/28/153706099/patients-crusade-for-access-to-their-medical-device-data

even though Campos’ ICD (implantable cardioverter-defibrillator) can wirelessly transmit data twice a day about his heart and the ICD itself, that information goes only to his doctor.
Campos has to make an appointment and ask for a printout.
And that, he says, just doesn’t seem fair.

“It’s my body, my life, my health. Why shouldn’t I have access to do as I please with this data?” Campos says.

Steinhaus says, in principle, the company is fine with giving patients their data directly.
The problem is how to format it so it’s useful to everyone.
As is, the raw data is highly technical. Would patients understand it?