Technology has promised to transform health care for years now. Multiple apps, devices, and other e-health approaches are being created to help the patient increase their awareness, education and accountability in their own health. In the not-so-distant future, technology will be able to continuously monitor, track and even diagnose a patient remotely.
“An overall trend in your health is very different from a single data point collected at a visit to a doctor’s office,” said Mark Benden, PhD, CPE, associate professor in the Department of Environmental and Occupational Health and director of the Ergonomics Center at the Texas A&M School of Public Health. “Knowing the trends will greatly improve both care and prevention.” In fact, according to a 2013 report, 73 percent of physicians think that health information technology will—at least in the long term—improve health care quality.
Technology may aid in taking a simple patient history. A wearable device can already show things like how many steps a patient is taking each day and their average heart rate, and at some point, they may also be able to measure disease markers or indicators like blood pressure, cholesterol or blood sugar. “Having information from these devices allows providers and patients to have a data-driven conversation, not one based on a one-time sample,” said Benden, who is a member of the Texas A&M Center for Remote Health Technologies and Systems. “Having objective data can also help with the natural tendency of patients telling their provider what they think they want to hear.”
For example, if a wearable device could accurately measure heart rate and blood pressure at every moment of the day, providers could keep this data as part of the person’s electronic health record. If someone’s blood pressure started to rise over time, the provider could consider prescribing a medication to bring it down to the healthy range and be confident that the rise was an actual trend, not a one-time high outlier.
Technology can help physicians make better decisions in other ways as well. Hongbin Wang, PhD, professor at the Texas A&M College of Medicine and co-director of the Texas A&M Biomedical Informatics Center, is working on a computer model of neurons to predict a decision—a medical diagnosis, for example—and illuminate any biases that might be present.
Wang’s work, and other applications of big data, may help with diagnosis by drawing together not only one person’s test results over time but also results from thousands or millions of other people. Data from many patients’ treatment outcomes may also help clinicians recommend the best treatment for each individual: the ultimate goal of precision medicine.
Although technology plays an important role in diagnosis and treatment, for Benden and other public health practitioners, it’s technology’s potential to aid in disease prevention that is most exciting. If exercise is one of the most effective methods of staving off diseases from cancer to heart disease to Alzheimer’s, the main challenge is motivating people to become active. Although fitness trackers were supposed to help, there’s little evidence that they make people more active over time. “We’re struggling to show that wearables are changing behaviors…what’s missing?” Benden asked. “I think we’re missing human connection.”
That human connection could be as simple as the provider receiving a notification about a shift in their patient’s trends, allowing the physician or nurse to follow up with a phone call to check in. Of course, as technology itself becomes more human-like, it may be able to motivate people on its own. “When we learn to use these devices in a way that responds to someone as a person and caters to their individual needs, it will be very powerful,” Benden said. “The technology will know you and be able to help you make healthy choices in whatever way works best for you personally.”
Someday technology may even allow patients to deal with less-complicated issues on their own—or possibly respond by itself. “Someday, the devices will be smart enough to know what’s happening to you and intervene when necessary,” Benden said, like a pacemaker that can help a heartbeat regularly while monitoring rhythms, and then if needed defibrillate automatically. “A lot of those corrections will be automatic, and people can continue about their days without ever knowing that a device just saved their lives.”
[osd_subscribe categories=’precision-medicine’ placeholder=’Email Address’ button_text=’Subscribe Now for any new posts on the topic “PRECISION MEDICINE”‘]
Receive an email update when we add a new PRECISION MEDICINE article.
The Latest on: Precision medicine
via Google News
The Latest on: Precision medicine
- Global Oncology Precision Medicine Market Report 2022: Increased Trend Towards Individualising Cancer Care Driving Growth - ResearchAndMarkets.comon August 4, 2022 at 8:11 am
Over the years, the burden of cancer continues to grow globally, creating substantial pressure on patients, their families, communities and healthcare systems. Hence, precision medicine has been ...
- GenomOncology and Congenica announce collaborative development of novel Precision Oncology Solutionon August 4, 2022 at 4:14 am
Congenica, a UK-based digital health company that enables the rapid analysis and interpretation of genomic data, has selected the GenomOncology Precision Oncology Platform for the development of a ...
- Precision Medicine Market| Size, Share, Future Analysis, Global Growth and Future Forecast 2028 | COVID-19 Impact on Industryon August 3, 2022 at 11:30 pm
The Global Precision Medicine Market contains a brief corporate profile of key Precision Medicine market players. All segments surveyed in the report are analysed based on various factors such as ...
- Revolutionizing Healthcare Testing: 1health Unveils Next Generation Diagnostic Platform that Enables Precision Medicine at Scaleon August 3, 2022 at 8:51 pm
(“1health”), an industry-leading healthcare tech company that empowers laboratories to make diagnostic testing accessible and affordable at scale, announces the launch of its Next Generation ...
- Precision Medicine Market Growth With Top Leading Players, Growth Key Factors, Global Trends, Industry Share, And Forecast 2022-2031on August 1, 2022 at 11:44 pm
Kenneth Research has evaluated the current market opportunities in Precision Medicine Market in the healthcare industry for the ...
- A better understanding of human diversity is needed to equitably advance precision medicineon July 29, 2022 at 1:40 am
Achieving the goal of precision medicine for all requires continued study of what makes humans different. But if diversity research has shown one thing, it is that what separates us is much less than ...
- Oncology Precision Medicine Market Size is projected to reach USD 124.84 billion by 2030, growing at a CAGR of 10.85%: Straits Researchon July 28, 2022 at 12:00 pm
The global market for Oncology Precision Medicine was estimated to be worth $49.4 billion in 2021, and it is expected to reach $ 124.84 billion by 2030, expanding at a CAGR of 10.85% from 2021 to 2030 ...
- ACP offers guidance on the ethical use of genetic testing and precision medicineon July 26, 2022 at 12:24 am
A new position paper from the American College of Physicians (ACP) offers guidance regarding ethical decision-making for the integration of precision medicine and genetic testing into internal ...
- How to improve patient recruitment in your precision medicine researchon July 25, 2022 at 12:00 am
Precision medicine research relies on genetic testing at scale, but has long suffered recruitment and retention headaches. The answer, says Patrick Short, CEO of Sano Genetics, is to start early and ...
via Bing News