The World Health Organization (WHO) defines health technology as “the use of organized knowledge and skills in the form of medical procedures, healthcare systems, medicines, and devices to solve health problems and improve the quality of life.” Health technology is rapidly changing the medical industry, transforming many of the processes that we used to do manually. For instance, it is making patient registration easier, data monitoring simpler and laboratory testing more convenient.
The continued evolution of technology in medicine is also making it easier for patients to receive expert medical help quickly and cost-effectively. For instance, if someone is bedridden with a serious illness and lives in a remote mountain town, they don’t need to be transported to an urban hospital for a medical checkup. They can consult with a doctor from the privacy of their homes using video conferencing technology.
One field where health technology has made a huge impact is in diagnosis. Physicians no longer have to rely on observation and intuition to figure out what ails their patients. They now have plenty of technological help in their quest to accurately diagnose patients.
Many More Diagnostic Tools
It was not that long ago that doctors had to rely on their uncanny memories and simple tools like stethoscopes to listen to a heartbeat, hypodermic needles to get blood samples to analyze, and sphygmomanometers to evaluate blood pressure. Now, things are different. It’s possible to get a more accurate diagnosis through the use of a variety of technological devices and procedures.
Here are five remarkable ways that technology has improved diagnosis and to provide patients with even more effective health care:
- Superior monitors for measuring vital signs: One of the simplest ways a doctor or nurse can evaluate a patient’s health is to get an accurate reading of their vital signs. A Vital Monitor can help to collect information that medical staff can use to diagnose someone’s health and plan a course of treatment for them. It only takes a few minutes for medical staff to monitor and record a patient’s vital signs and collect accurate readings about their health.
- Self-diagnosis via mobile health: Mobile health, referred to as mHealth, makes it easy for patients to monitor and record some of their own vital signs if they don’t need to go into a clinic for a comprehensive health checkup. For instance, using a smartphone or tablet, they can record their own heart rate variability and then send the information to their doctor. mHealth makes it easy for healthcare providers to document the progression of a patient’s recovery from an illness without having to set up an appointment.
- Improved doctor-patient communications online: Patient portals allow patients to become a more active participant in their own health care. Internet technology allows patients to discuss their symptoms with their doctors and for their doctors to access the patient’s medical records and discuss these with the patient online. As a result, patients are now more involved and better informed about their symptoms and the healthcare they need. It also makes it easier for them to access the medical information that they might need to understand their own condition better.
- Moving beyond x-ray machines: An MRI scanner, like CT-scanners and x-ray machines, is used to take images of tissue inside the body. It is especially useful if images need to be taken of the brain. This device surrounds a patient with a large magnet that aligns with the magnetic particles in his or her body. An MRI scanner can check for all sorts of abnormal organs. For instance, it’s used to spot cancerous tissues and look for torn muscles and ligaments, and many other things.
In closing, we live in exciting times. It’s now possible to go beyond a doctor’s expertise, medical knowledge, and skills to help understand a patient’s medical issues. There are now all sorts of ways to diagnose a patient’s illness and non-invasively peer inside their bodies to see if there are any abnormalities, tissue damage, or failing organs.