Digital Diagnostics: An Innovative Technology for Improving Medical Care


The healthcare industry is ever-changing. Year after year, new technologies are being introduced for the purpose of changing the way medical services are delivered. These innovations are benefiting not only patients but doctors as well. Among other technologies in the field of healthcare, one of the most significant would be digital diagnostics. Simply put, this is the technology that will make it possible to deliver a remote diagnosis. Even if the patient is at home and if the doctor is in a distant clinic, this technology will allow proper diagnosis of a health problem.


How It Works


Through digital diagnostics, automated health assessments can be done electronically and virtually. This is going to break geographical barriers, making it possible to diagnose patients even outside of the clinic. Today, different companies have developed their respective mobile applications and software programs to make remote diagnostics possible. In the future, it is anticipated that more companies would also create high-end programs to diagnose patients without having to be physically in front of each other.


Examples of Digital Diagnostics


In different places all over the world, various approaches have been implemented in order to carry out diagnosis in a digital manner. One example of this technology is the Lifelens project. The latter is a smartphone application that has been created for diagnosing malaria. In this point-of-care tool, you simply have to take a drop of blood as a sample and have it placed in a film that can only absorb malarial parasite. It will be examined through the lens with the use of attachment that can provide magnification of up to 350 times.


In Jamaica, one study focused on the use of sensors placed in smartphones in order to diagnose asthma induced by exercise. This will eliminate the need for attaching sensors to the body.


Meanwhile, in a research completed at Aston University, the potential of digital diagnostics to help evaluate signs of Parkinson’s disease have been explored. Motion detectors and microphones are attached to smartphones. Through voice, behavior, and motion, among others, symptoms of Parkinson’s disease are assessed.


Oscan is another digital diagnostic tool that proves to be promising. A work of researchers from Stanford, this is a device that can be attached to a smartphone. The picture of the mouth of the patient can be sent to dental experts for diagnosis. This is especially helpful in poor nations wherein access to regular dental care is difficult.


Ophthalmology can also benefit from digital diagnostics. A group of researchers from Stanford University developed a low-cost device that can be attached to a smartphone. This will help to detect possible eye problems, such as glaucoma and retinal detachment. This will allow phones to take eye images with high-definition quality, making it easy to spot any potential problem.