Technology innovation is permeating every part of society, healthcare included. Not only has technology changed things like surgical procedures to improve post-op recovery, but it’s also helping patients to take a more active role in their own healthcare management. In short, it’s creating more proactive patients. While there are countless technologies that are helping patients to better understand their health conditions and manage them, here are seven key ones that are rising in popularity.
Can you imagine what the cost was 20 years ago to get a genetic test done? These were only done in extreme circumstances and were very expensive. Not only that, but it took months to get results back. Thanks to innovations in technology, genetic testing has become increasingly accessible and affordable. This is a boon for patients, given that it can help you understand your risks in order to take preventative measures. In addition to helping people manage their health more effectively, genetic testing also has implications for what happens when someone gets sick.
The ability to test for disease risk factors is a powerful tool that’s becoming more common in clinical settings. Testing allows people with cancer-causing mutations or who are at high risk of developing certain diseases, such as early onset heart disease, access to preventative measures such as lifestyle changes or drugs that may mitigate their risk of getting sick before it’s too late.
At-Home Disease Tests
These days, there are a variety of at-home disease tests that can be administered from the privacy of your own home. These tests require some blood or saliva and can be ordered through a doctor or online. These tests save time and money. There are no more long office waits and unnecessary appointments. Just collect your sample, send it off, and wait for the results to come back. This is helpful for learning about whether you have celiac disease or not and includes things like a fertility test for women as well. They allow anyone with access to internet access to get tested without having an appointment with their doctor first.
Wearable technology is a growing trend that is here to stay. Wearables like Fitbits, Apple Watches, and Garmin devices can benefit patients with chronic disease management. These devices have been shown to help people manage their diabetes, hypertension, and sleep apnea by tracking physical activity, heart rate, and sleep patterns.
Mobile Apps for Mental Health
People who struggle with mental health issues often respond well to cognitive behavioral therapy and other treatments. Apps can help these individuals by providing access to the resources they need to overcome their challenges or to thrive in spite of them. It can even give them access to support via messaging systems when they are having a hard time.
Can you imagine seeing a doctor from the comfort of your home? Can you imagine not needing to lug yourself to an appointment when you’re feeling awful only to wait an extra hour to see anyone? That’s the magic of telemedicine. This technology allows doctors to meet with patients, order tests, and more all from the comfort of home. Not only that, but telemedicine technology can even monitor patients who are at home. This is imperative for people recovering from sickness, who need blood pressure monitoring, and more.
Software for Electronic Medical Records
Every time you switch doctors, get a specialist, or need treatment in a new place, lugging your medical records can be challenging. Technology is starting to change the ways medical records are accessed making it easier to share information between medical offices. The software also allows for better communication between doctors and patients, making it easier for both parties to collaborate on a patient’s well-being.
Artificial Intelligence in Healthcare
Artificial intelligence (AI) is a powerful tool for diagnosing and treating diseases. AI can help with the diagnosis and treatment of cancer, heart disease, and other chronic conditions. It has also been successfully used to identify patients with mental health disorders. AI can even aid in the diagnosis of rare diseases that are often misdiagnosed by medical professionals without the benefit of AI technology.
Using these different technologies helps patients to take a more active and proactive role in not only identifying diseases but in tracking and managing them as well.
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