VMW Monthly - May 2008 - ISSN 1388-722X



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Virtual Medical Worlds is a monthly Virtual Magazine on Telemedicine and High Performance Computing and Networking for readers interested in computer applications in medical environments. VMW is produced by an editorial team composed of professionals in publishing, and an advisory board with professionals in telemedicine, providing the embedding into the everyday practice and research. Check out the VMW Web site for the calendar of events, the various services, and the friendly advertising rates.

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Contents May 2008 Issue

 
Cross-Atlantic state-of-the-art
 
New Armed Forces Institute of Regenerative Medicine to lead way in caring for wounded
University of Texas Southwestern testing new hybrid hearing device combining advantages of hearing aids and implants
University of California San Diego researchers eliminate drug discovery bottleneck
New 3D ultrasound could improve stroke diagnosis and care
Protein data bank archives 50.000th molecule structure
UCLA researchers design nanomachine that kills cancer cells
 
Grid for Health
 
Using the VL-e Grid infrastructure for Life Sciences
Programme finalized for First International HealthGrid meeting to be held in the United States, June 2-4, 2008
IBM and University of Edinburgh use world's most advanced supercomputer to tackle HIV virus before it infects human cells
Scientists show first 3D image of antibody gene
eXludus launches SimpliGrid software for life sciences applications
Palomar Pomerado Health moves to the forefront of digital health care with IBM storage virtualization
 
Healthcare compunetics
 
New nanotube sensor can continuously monitor minute amounts of insulin
Successful launch of the electronic maternity pass pilot project
Aerotel and Medicronic-Vodafone launch innovative wireless homecare system in Spain
Sheffield Primary Care Trust telehealth project wins prestigious NHS award
National Science Foundation awards $1,5 million for study of in-home health care via wireless networks
Needle-size device created to track tumours and radiation dose
 
Industrial Chemist's Corner
 
Immersion Medical and GMV sign agreement for new virtual reality arthroscopy simulation system
REACH Call Inc. expands web-based telehealth service offering
Medicsight announces Chinese State Food and Drug Administration approval for MedicRead Colon workstation and new marketing partnership with INFINITT
Argosy Publishing launches The Visible Body, the first comprehensive 3D human anatomy visualization and learning tool
Forterra Systems selected to participate in U.S. Army Small Business Innovation Research Commercialization Pilot Programme
Immersion Medical adds Knot Tying and Suturing to LaparoscopyVR surgical simulator
 
Planet Europe in Action
 
Telecare provides choice and independence for people with learning disabilities and their carers
Removal of superficial tumours in esophagus by endoscopy can avoid extirpation of this part
BRIGHTER lasers for tomorrow's technologies
European Union grant ALERT project for the early detection of adverse drugs events
Computation to unravel how genes are regulated and shed light on how cells become different
Survey takes pulse of eHealth in Europe and prescribes wider ICT use among doctors
 
The 21st century hospital
 
Hospital Clínic conducts the first kidney extraction through the vagina in Europe
Children's Hospital leads projects to develop United States' first heart assist devices for young children
Children's Hospital Boston, Salud Family Health Centers and Unity Health Care select eClinicalWorks unified EMR/PM solution
Study finds that minimally invasive robotic bypass surgery provides health and economic benefits
Hospital Clínic awarded by CEREBRA Foundation for its excellence in early diagnosis of brain damage
Researchers pilot new electronic system for infectious illness
 
Virtual snap shots
 
Latest internet technology for the replacement of animal experiments
MCN Healthcare launches Policy Manager 2.0
Communicating your way to a healthy heart
Computer game could assist breathing of COPD patients
University of Sheffield researchers light up lungs to help diagnose disease
VPAD premieres at DeafNation Expo Pomona
 
VMWC news bites
 
Prosurgics collaborates in pan-European project to develop technology for future neurosurgical robotics
Nano-sized technology has super-sized effect on tumours
Simulating surgery to reduce implant complications
Gaming Technology, Virtual Reality and Healthcare
Unversity of Houston study shows virtual world is therapeautic for addicts
New robots can provide elder care for aging baby boomers
 

Leads May 2008 Issue

 
Cross-Atlantic state-of-the-art
 
New Armed Forces Institute of Regenerative Medicine to lead way in caring for wounded
Full ArticleThe Department of Defense has created a new, federally-funded institution, the Armed Forces Institute of Regenerative Medicine (AFIRM) during a briefing at the Pentagon. The AFIRM will be made up of two multi-institutional consortia, one led by Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, North Carlina, and the University of Pittsburgh; and one led by Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey, and the Cleveland Clinic. Each group has been awarded $42.5 million. The United States Army Institute of Surgical Research in San Antonio, Texas, will work with these academic consortia to provide key guidance on military medical needs and conduct trials of new therapies.
University of Texas Southwestern testing new hybrid hearing device combining advantages of hearing aids and implants
Full ArticleA new hybrid hearing aid/cochlear implant device designed for patients who can benefit from both is being evaluated by the University of Texas (UT) Southwestern Medical Center otolaryngologists, as part of a multisite, national study. The cross-breed device, called the DUET Electric-Acoustic System, or EAS, is already used in Europe, but not yet approved for use in the United States. It targets a population currently falling through the cracks - borderline cases for which hearing aids don't adequately distinguish sounds, but for who some natural hearing remains. For these individuals, cochlear implants that entirely replace natural hearing aren't recommended either.
University of California San Diego researchers eliminate drug discovery bottleneck
Full ArticleDetermining the structure of unknown natural compounds is a slow and expensive part of drug screening and development - but this may now change thanks to a new combination of experimental and computational protocols developed at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) and presented at RECOMB 2008 - Research in Computational Molecular Biology - on March 31, 2008 in Singapore. UC San Diego researchers have devised a way to cut the time it takes to determine the structure of peptides derived from natural compounds from six months or a year to as little as one day. This advance may assist drug discovery researchers - who need to know as much as possible as quickly as possible about the natural products with antibiotic, antiviral and other pharmacologically interesting properties that they are probing.
New 3D ultrasound could improve stroke diagnosis and care
Full ArticleUsing 3D ultrasound technology they designed, Duke University bio-engineers can compensate for the thickness and unevenness of the skull to see in real-time the arteries within the brain that most often clog up and cause strokes. The researchers believe that these advances will ultimately improve the treatment of stroke patients, whether by giving emergency medical technicians (EMT) the ability to quickly scan the heads of potential stroke victims while in the ambulance or allowing physicians to easily monitor in real time the patients' response to therapy at the bedside.
Protein data bank archives 50.000th molecule structure
Full ArticleThe Protein Data Bank (PDB) based at Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, and the University of California-San Diego (UCSD) this month reached a significant milestone in its 37-year history. The 50.000th molecule structure was released into its archive, joining other structures vital to pharmacology, bioinformatics and education.
UCLA researchers design nanomachine that kills cancer cells
Full ArticleResearchers from the Nano Machine Center at the California NanoSystems Institute (CNSI) at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) have developed a novel type of nanomachine that can capture and store anticancer drugs inside tiny pores and release them into cancer cells in response to light. Known as a "nanoimpeller", the device is the first light-powered nanomachine that operates inside a living cell, a development that has strong implications for cancer treatment. UCLA researchers reported the synthesis and operation of nanoparticles containing nanoimpellers that can deliver anticancer drugs March 31 in the on-line edition of the nanoscience journal Small.
 
Grid for Health
 
Using the VL-e Grid infrastructure for Life Sciences
Full ArticleFor IBM and the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Alex de Landgraaf presented some results of using the VL-e Grid infrastructure for a Life Sciences application. He presented his results at the Gridforum.nl Business Day in Eindhoven. VL-e - Virtual Laboratory for e-Science - is a 20 million euro Dutch project that aims at creating a virtual laboratory environment for e-Science and industrial research in The Netherlands. The project is running for several years and has a working Grid infrastructure. Hence the idea to see whether the VL-e Proof-of-Concept Grid could be used by the Acadamic Medical Centre, Amsterdam (AMC) for routine investigations of genome analysis.
Programme finalized for First International HealthGrid meeting to be held in the United States, June 2-4, 2008
Full ArticleThe HealthGrid U.S. Alliance has finalized the programme for the sixth annual International HealthGrid conference - the first one to be held in the United States, "Global HealthGrid: eScience Meets Biomedical Informatics".
IBM and University of Edinburgh use world's most advanced supercomputer to tackle HIV virus before it infects human cells
Full ArticleResearchers at the University of Edinburgh and IBM's TJ Watson Research Center have launched a five-year joint research project to use supercomputing simulations combined with lab experiments to speed the design of drugs aimed at inhibiting infection by the HIV virus. The project includes powerful computing technology, including IBM's Blue Gene supercomputer, combined with new experimental characterization aimed at targeting the infection process itself by designing inhibitors for the part of the virus responsible for allowing the virus' genetic material to enter the human cell.
Scientists show first 3D image of antibody gene
Full ArticleUsing a multi-disciplinary mix of geometry, biological research and techniques developed to solve problems on supercomputers, scientists at the University of California (UC), San Diego have shown for the first time how a genome is organized in three-dimensional space. Researchers led by Cornelis Murre, a professor of biology at UC San Diego, and Steve Cutchin, senior scientist for visualization services at the San Diego Supercomputer Center (SDSC), used the gene encoding the immunoglobulin heavy chain locus - responsible for generating diverse kinds of antibodies - to demonstrate the structure of the genome.
eXludus launches SimpliGrid software for life sciences applications
Full ArticleeXludus Technologies, a developer of multi-core system capacity management, virtualization and provisioning solutions, at the Bio-IT World Conference & Expo, has made exclusively available its SimpliGrid software to members of the Bioinformatics Organization Inc., an organisation that develops and maintains computational resources to facilitate worldwide communications and collaborations between people of all educational and professional levels.
Palomar Pomerado Health moves to the forefront of digital health care with IBM storage virtualization
Full ArticlePalomar Pomerado Health (PPH), the largest public health district in California, has gone live with a new virtualized information infrastructure which is enabling PPH to manage and store electronic medical records for the very first time, dramatically improving the availability of critical information and create a more manageable storage infrastructure.
 
Healthcare compunetics
 
New nanotube sensor can continuously monitor minute amounts of insulin
Full ArticleA new method that uses nanotechnology to rapidly measure minute amounts of insulin is a major step toward developing the ability to assess the health of the body's insulin-producing cells in real time. Among other potential applications, this method could be used to improve the efficacy of a new procedure for treating Type 1 (juvenile) diabetes that has demonstrated the ability to free diabetics from insulin injections for several years. It works by transplanting insulin-producing cells into the livers of diabetics to replace the cells that the disease has disabled or destroyed. The new insulin detection method was developed by a team of Vanderbilt researchers headed by Associate Professor of Chemistry David Cliffel and is reported in the February 18 issue of the journal Analytica Chimica Acta.
Successful launch of the electronic maternity pass pilot project
Full ArticleEvery pregnant woman in Germany knows it and has it - the maternity pass. The 16 page blue-green booklet is used to document all important pregnancy and delivery information. Now, the Gynecological Hospital of the University of Heidelberg is testing an electronic pregnancy record in co-operation with seven gynaecologists in private practice and two hospitals for obstetrics that are part of the Rhine-Neckar Health Centers. Its purpose is to provide even better care to pregnant women.
Aerotel and Medicronic-Vodafone launch innovative wireless homecare system in Spain
Full ArticleVodafone Spain in conjunction with Medicronic Salud have used Aerotel's e-CliniQ Wireless Home Monitoring System with successful results. The e-CliniQ Wireless Home Monitoring System enables patients to keep track of their health, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Using Bluetooth technology, Aerotel's Tele-Modem Homecare Hub remotely monitors the patient's vital signs from various homecare sensors, transmitting the data to Medicronic's central receiving station via the Vodafone cellular network, where it is stored and analysed by Aerotel's Medical Parameters Monitoring (MPM) software.
Sheffield Primary Care Trust telehealth project wins prestigious NHS award
Full ArticleSheffield Primary Care Trust (PCT) has won the regional finals of the British National Health Service (NHS) Health and Social Care Awards in the category for Innovative Information & Communication Technology as a result of its innovative deployment of telehealth to monitor people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Sheffield PCT used Genesis monitors from Tunstall to tackle the issue of COPD in the community by monitoring patients in their own homes, which saw a massive improvement in their quality of life.
National Science Foundation awards $1,5 million for study of in-home health care via wireless networks
Full ArticleRice University, The Methodist Hospital Research Institute and Technology For All (TFA) have received a $1,5 million federal grant for research in east Houston that will examine ways to provide novel, low-cost, personalized health monitoring to people with chronic diseases living in working-class communities. The researchers plan to examine how patients with chronic diseases use inexpensive handheld wireless monitoring devices called Blue Boxes, to participate actively in their own medical treatment. The National Science Foundation (NSF) grant will pay for the development and testing of the Blue Boxes and the wireless broadband network that will connect the devices to a central source for analysis.
Needle-size device created to track tumours and radiation dose
Full ArticleEngineers at Purdue University are creating a wireless device designed to be injected into tumours to tell doctors the precise dose of radiation received and locate the exact position of tumours during treatment. The information would help to more effectively kill tumours, according to Babak Ziaie, an associate professor in the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering and a researcher at Purdue's Birck Nanotechnology Center.
 
Industrial Chemist's Corner
 
Immersion Medical and GMV sign agreement for new virtual reality arthroscopy simulation system
Full ArticleImmersion Medical, a wholly owned subsidiary of Immersion, and GMV have signed an agreement whereby Immersion Medical will market and sell GMV's insightArthroVR virtual reality arthroscopy surgical simulator in most countries around the world. Immersion Medical begins accepting orders today and will exhibit the new VR arthroscopy system at the 2008 annual meeting of the Arthroscopy Association of North America in Washington, D.C., April 24-27.
REACH Call Inc. expands web-based telehealth service offering
Full ArticleREACH Call Inc., a provider of 100 percent web-based telehealth solutions, has added a general telemedicine module to its service offering. This new general telemedicine module facilitates faster treatment for patients in rural areas by connecting rural ER physicians with specialists who can remotely diagnose, evaluate and recommend treatment for a variety of medical conditions from anywhere in the world using a Web browser.
Medicsight announces Chinese State Food and Drug Administration approval for MedicRead Colon workstation and new marketing partnership with INFINITT
Full ArticleMedicsight PLC, a subsidiary of MGT Capital Investments Inc., and an industry expert in the development of Computer-Aided Detection (CAD) and image analysis software which assists in the early detection and diagnosis of disease, has received approval from the Chinese State Food and Drug Administration (SFDA) for its MedicRead Colon workstation. Medicsight will launch this workstation via a Chinese dealer network which gives the company access to almost 1000 sales representatives. The company also has signed a new global partnership with INFINITT, a medical imaging and picture archiving and communication systems (PACS) company. Combined INFINITT-Medicsight products for the detection of colorectal cancer will be distributed using INFINITT's global network of offices in six strategic countries and partners and sales channel representatives in 20 other countries worldwide.
Argosy Publishing launches The Visible Body, the first comprehensive 3D human anatomy visualization and learning tool
Full ArticleArgosy Publishing, an award-winning interactive, visual content developer, has officially launched The Visible Body, the first free, web-based 3D interactive model of the human body. Initially developed for educators, and health and medical professionals, The Visible Body is a next-generation, professional-grade platform that demonstrates how the human body works. It will also be of interest to individuals with a deep appreciation for the human anatomy and science. The Visible Body allows all users to visualize the human body and quickly and easily explore areas of interest to see how more than 1700 anatomical structures - including major organs and systems - work together.
Forterra Systems selected to participate in U.S. Army Small Business Innovation Research Commercialization Pilot Programme
Full ArticleForterra Systems, a market and technology specialist in private virtual worlds, has been selected to participate in the new Army Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Commercialization Pilot Programme (CPP). This fiscal 2008 Army CPP project builds upon previous Phase II SBIR work performed by Forterra in the area of medical simulation training on behalf of the United States Army Medical Research and Materials Command's Telemedicine and Advanced Technology Research Center (TATRC). This work is supported by the United States Army Medical Research and Materiel Command under Contract No. W81XWH-05-C-0040.
Immersion Medical adds Knot Tying and Suturing to LaparoscopyVR surgical simulator
Full ArticleImmersion Medical is adding a module that includes Suturing and Knot Tying procedures and Needle Orientation and Driving skills for the LaparoscopyVR (LapVR) surgical simulator. Immersion Medical has been demonstrating the new module at the annual meeting of the Society of American Gastrointestinal Endoscopic Surgeons (SAGES) in Philadelphia.
 
Planet Europe in Action
 
Telecare provides choice and independence for people with learning disabilities and their carers
Full ArticleTelecare offers increased choice, independence and quality of life for the United Kingdom's 1,75 million people with learning disabilities, according to telecare and telehealth provider Tunstall. The company has updated its Solutions for Independent Living guide to show how telecare provides a new model of care and support, enabling people with learning disabilities, their families and carers, to live full and independent lives.
Removal of superficial tumours in esophagus by endoscopy can avoid extirpation of this part
Full ArticleThe removal through endoscopy of tumours that affect only the superficial layers of the esophagus can avoid complete extirpation of this part of the digestive tract. The technique, carried out at the University Hospital of Navarra for the last three years, was presented at the VI International Course on Therapeutic Endoscopy in the Digestive System, organized by the Digestive System Service at this hospital. Specifically, more than 90 percent of patients treated for this ailment at the University Hospital of Navarra have not needed the extirpation of the esophagus.
BRIGHTER lasers for tomorrow's technologies
Full ArticleScientists and engineers across Europe have joined forces in a unique collaborative effort to develop a new generation of high-brightness lasers that will transform the fields of health care, communications and entertainment. The 16,25 million euro - with 9,7 million euro of European Commission funding - project called WWW.BRIGHTER.EU, which runs until September 2009, has brought 22 of Europe's top research teams together from industry, internationally-recognized research laboratories and leading academic institutions to achieve the next quantum leap in this multi-billion Euro field by making lasers smaller, brighter, more efficient - and cheaper.
European Union grant ALERT project for the early detection of adverse drugs events
Full ArticleA new European Union-funded information and communication technology (ICT) project is tackling issues of safety in newly developed drugs. Over the next three and a half years, the ALERT - "Early detection of adverse drug events by integrative mining of clinical records and biomedical knowledge" - project partners will work on an innovative computer system for a better and faster detection of adverse drug reactions (ADRs).
Computation to unravel how genes are regulated and shed light on how cells become different
Full ArticleA closer alliance between computational and experimental researchers is needed to make progress towards one of biology's most challenging goals, understanding how epigenetic marks contribute to regulation of gene expression. This emerged from a recent workshop organized by the European Science Foundation (ESF), "Computational Approaches to the Role of Epigenetic Marks in Transcription Regulation".
Survey takes pulse of eHealth in Europe and prescribes wider ICT use among doctors
Full ArticleThe European Commission has published a pan-European survey on electronic services in health care - eHealth - that shows 87 percent of European doctors - General Practitioners - use a computer, 48 percent with a broadband connection. European doctors increasingly store and send patients' data such as lab reports electronically. In using such eHealth applications, doctors and medical services have already improved health care in Europe through, for example, more efficient administration and shorter waiting times for patients. The report also highlights where doctors could make better use of ICT to offer services such as telemonitoring, electronic prescriptions and cross border medical services.
 
The 21st century hospital
 
Hospital Clínic conducts the first kidney extraction through the vagina in Europe
Full ArticleThanks to the work of the expert group of Hospital Clínic de Barcelona, the extirpation of a kidney - affected by a malignant tumour - through the vagina has been achieved. This is the first time this intervention has been conducted in Europe, and the second in the world. This fact sets a milestone in the framework of minimally invasive surgery. The operation uses several cutting edge technology instruments of advanced surgery.
Children's Hospital leads projects to develop United States' first heart assist devices for young children
Full ArticleChildren's Hospital of Pittsburgh of University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) - a national expert in the use of lifesaving ventricular assist devices (VADs) for children in heart failure - is part of a collaboration that recently has been awarded a $2,3 million grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to develop an external heart pump designed specifically for small children. VADs are mechanical devices that take over the pumping action of the heart and offer lifesaving support, most often acting as a bridge to keep patients alive until a donor heart becomes available for transplantation. There are VADs approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for use in adults and larger adolescents in the United States, but none are designed and approved for use in infants and toddlers.
Children's Hospital Boston, Salud Family Health Centers and Unity Health Care select eClinicalWorks unified EMR/PM solution
Full ArticleChildren's Hospital Boston has purchased licenses of eClinicalWorks unified electronic medical record (EMR) and practice management (PM) software for its primary care network. As part of this agreement, eClinicalWorks is working with the Paediatric Physicians' Organization at Children's (PPOC) to build a paediatric-specific disease registry reporting module, which will aid the improvement of clinical care across the network. In addition, Salud Family Health Centers, the largest Federally Qualified Community Health Center (FQHC) in Colorado outside of Denver and Washington, D.C.'s Unity Health Care, the largest community health centre (CHC) network in the District of Columbia, have purchased the very same solution. At Salud, the software will support more than 100 providers to streamline practice operations between nine geographically dispersed locations from patient check-in to check-out and at Unity it will also benefit more than 100 providers between 31 locations, from patient check-in to check-out as well.
Study finds that minimally invasive robotic bypass surgery provides health and economic benefits
Full ArticleMinimally invasive heart bypass surgery using a DaVinci robot means a shorter hospital stay and faster recovery for patients, as well as fewer complications and a better chance that the new bypass vessels will stay open. And, according to a University of Maryland study, robotic heart bypass surgery also makes good economic sense for hospitals. The study "Superior Financial and Quality Metrics with Robotically-assisted (DaVinci) Coronary Artery Revascularization", has been presented at the 128th annual meeting of the American Surgical Association in New York.
Hospital Clínic awarded by CEREBRA Foundation for its excellence in early diagnosis of brain damage
Full ArticleFrom a certain age on, some children start to show cognitive or learning difficulties which had not been detected before. Most of these problems, around 80 percent, have their origins in the prenatal period. This is why an early identification is crucial in order to avoid future neurological problems affecting the normal development of the child. This is one of the main objectives of the multi-disciplinary research group in Foetal and Perinatal Medicine of the Hospital Clínic de Barcelona - IDIBAPS, directed by Dr. Eduard Gratacós. Thanks to the work of his group, it is possible to act from the very first stages, to perform a postnatal monitoring of the neonate and, hence, to reduce the impact of the brain damage acquired during the foetal life.
Researchers pilot new electronic system for infectious illness
Full ArticleResearchers at Harvard Pilgrim Health Care, Harvard Medical School, Atrius Health, and the Massachusetts Department of Public Health have created and tested a set of computer programmes that use electronic medical records to help clinicians detect contagious illness and automatically report them to public health departments.
 
Virtual snap shots
 
Latest internet technology for the replacement of animal experiments
Full ArticleDeveloped in close co-operation between Transinsight, Dresden, and the German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment, Berlin, the knowledge-based semantic search engine www.Go3R.org is now available on-line. It enables information transparency for the prevention of animal testing.
MCN Healthcare launches Policy Manager 2.0
Full ArticleMCN Healthcare, a provider of regulatory compliance solutions for the health care industry, has launched version 2.0 of the ellucid Policy Manager, the unique policy management system designed just for health care.
Communicating your way to a healthy heart
Full ArticleWhen it comes to matters of the heart, many experts say that communication is the key to a healthy relationship. But a recent study out of Temple University's School of Medicine finds that communication is the key to a healthy heart, as well. Alfred Bove, professor emeritus of medicine at the School of Medicine and chief of cardiology at Temple University Hospital, along with researchers at Temple's Telemedicine Research Center, recently finished a four-year study that examined the prevention of heart disease in at-risk, but otherwise healthy patients in rural and urban settings through frequent patient-doctor communications. The patients and doctors interacted via an internet-based health reporting system in conjunction with regular clinic visits.
Computer game could assist breathing of COPD patients
Full ArticlePatients suffering from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) may gain better control over their breathing by using their breath to play a computer game. The computer game may help these COPD patients breathe more efficiently, especially during exercise, according to a new study performed by researchers at the Veterans Administration and the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC).
University of Sheffield researchers light up lungs to help diagnose disease
Full ArticleResearchers at the University of Sheffield have developed innovative technology which illuminates a person's lungs and helps clinicians identify if they are functioning correctly. The new technology could result in earlier diagnosis of emphysema and smoking related damage, as well as other lung conditions and diseases.
VPAD premieres at DeafNation Expo Pomona
Full ArticleViable Inc., a provider of video relay services (VRS) for deaf and hard of hearing, is making the VPAD available for the first time at DeafNation Expo in Pomona, California. The VPAD is the first WiFi-enabled and portable videophone to be developed for VRS users.
 
VMWC news bites
 
Prosurgics collaborates in pan-European project to develop technology for future neurosurgical robotics
Full ArticleProsurgics, an image-guided surgical robotics company formerly called Armstrong Healthcare, is participating in a major new collaborative project. ROBOCAST - ROBOt and sensors integration for Computer Assisted Surgery and Therapy - is a 4,5 million euro collaborative project supported under the European Commission's 7th Framework Programme. The 3-year goal is to demonstrate advanced methods and technologies in a proof-of-concept system focused on minimally invasive, robot-assisted neurosurgery.
Nano-sized technology has super-sized effect on tumours
Full ArticleAnyone facing chemotherapy would welcome an advance promising to dramatically reduce their dose of these often harsh drugs. Using nanotechnology, researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have taken a step closer to that goal. The researchers focused a powerful drug directly on tumours in rabbits using drug-coated nanoparticles. They found that a drug dose 1000 times lower than used previously for this purpose markedly slowed tumour growth.
Simulating surgery to reduce implant complications
Full ArticleA computer simulation breakthrough could mean fewer medical complications and better surgical outcomes for patients undergoing hip, knee or spinal implant surgery. Each year surgeons across Europe perform a staggering 900.000 hip, knee and spinal implant operations. Implant surgery is one of the most remarkable advances in medical science. Such operations restore increased mobility and a vastly improved quality of life to millions of Europeans. Implant surgery also has one of the most remarkable success rates in medical practice, with reliable, predictable outcomes and very few complications. But it is not complication free.
Gaming Technology, Virtual Reality and Healthcare
Full ArticleThis article provides a high level overview on virtual reality (VR) and gaming technology solutions and their application in the field of healthcare at this point in time. Gaming technologies and VR have many possible applications in healthcare, especially in physical therapy, recreational therapy, training, and 3D visualization of medical information. Recommendations are offered in this article on next steps healthcare organizations should consider taking with regards to the emerging field of gaming technology.
Unversity of Houston study shows virtual world is therapeautic for addicts
Full ArticlePatients in therapy to overcome addictions have a new arena to test their coping skills - the virtual world. A new study by University of Houston Associate Professor Patrick Bordnick found that a virtual reality (VR) environment can provide the climate necessary to spark an alcohol craving so that patients can practise how to say "no" in a realistic and safe setting.
New robots can provide elder care for aging baby boomers
Full ArticleBaby boomers are set to retire, and robots are ready to help, providing elder care and improving the quality of life for those in need. Researchers at the University of Massachusetts (UMass) Amherst have developed a robotic assistant that can dial 911 in case of emergencies, remind clients to take their medication, help with grocery shopping and allow a client to talk to loved ones and health care providers.
 

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