As technology advances, so does healthcare. What was considered to be cutting edge fifteen years ago, or even five years ago could be widely available in hospitals or in pharmacies now. Saving lives is a heroic task – but what about making life quality better, or helping people incorporate habits into their routines that will extend their ability to enjoy active and fulfilling lives?
Humankind’s history of medical and tech advances have taken off in the last 100 years. Before then, only sporadic advances were made. The most recent breakthroughs are thanks to the invention of biocompatible materials, AI, and other things that simply would not be possible a 100, 50, or even 10 years ago. We build on our own success.
What are some tech gadgets you could get your hands on today that have the capability to save lives? We have created a fun list that might give you a lot of food for thought.
We can all agree that communication technology, in general, has helped to save countless lives ever since the telegraph was invented – the communication revolution took us from letters to telegrams, from stationary phone calls to texts and mobile devices.
One of the most influential life-saving mobile devices up to date is the medical alert system. You have probably heard “help, I have fallen and I can’t get up” so many times that you might not even know where the term comes from – it has become a household inside joke because of decades of low budget commercials.
But if you have ever had an elderly or sick relative in your care, you will know how serious of an issue the loss of independence is for any grown adult. Remote alerts have allowed people to remain independent and living on their own longer, without their relatives having to constantly worry about something happening.
Elderly people are very likely to fall because of poor balance, muscle weakness and they might have a problem getting help. Senior citizens are less likely to carry a cell phone on them all the time, and in an emergency situation, it’s better to not have to fumble on a device and attempt to find the right buttons to find help.
Remote alerts usually have one simple call button, and quite a few different options. If you want to see which one is best for your loved one, check out some reviews on Medical Alert Systems HQ. This technology not only saves lives but helps to keep your loved ones independent longer.
Did you know that the first defibrillator was used in 1899? Two physiologists from the University of Geneva experimented on dogs and found out that large charges would reverse ventricular fibrillation. This was an amazing breakthrough, but the first “real” defibrillators wouldn’t be built until the 1930s and would be first used on a human out of sheer desperation when a boy of 14 experienced cardiac arrest on the operating table. The rest is history. Read more about the fascinating story of how the defibrillator made it into our homes here. Meanwhile, take a look at how it is a valuable lifesaving device.
What does a defibrillator do and why do you need one in your home? It’s used if someone goes into sudden cardiac arrest. This can happen for many reasons when your heart’s electrical activity gets disrupted. This can either present by ventricular tachycardia (abnormally fast heartbeat) or irregular heartbeat (ventricular fibrillation). These may cause your heart to stop.
Your heart is a powerful machine – it’s the hardest working muscle in the body. But like any machine, it needs wiring – and electrical currents in our bodies control the heartbeat. The defibrillator can actually set an irregular heartbeat on track and restore normal rhythm. This is a powerful lifesaver, because even manual pulmonary resuscitation will not set the heart back into a normal pace, although it might restore the heartbeat. Modern defibrillators will give you verbal instructions – they’re easy to use in emergency situations by non-medical personnel.
Doesn’t it seem like only a few years ago that 3D printing was just beginning to take off? When it became available to the wider public, many people wondered what it could be used for. Some still are. But there are a few fields that instantly saw this technology as an incredible opportunity to get creative – and to save lives.
Some estimate that by the year 2025, the 3D printing industry in the medical field alone will be worth over $3.5 billion. How did a novelty machine that prints models and fun gadgets become a leading medical technology? Here are some of its uses:
Organ Printing – this is top tier technology today, and it’s still a little mind-blowing. 3D printers use living cells to print actual living structures in a lab setting. This technology is still in the testing phase, but will save lives as it will soon become cheaper and safer than organ transplants. The tissue that is being used as material for this printing process is called “bio ink”.
Custom Surgical Instruments – sometimes, surgeries are routine, and sometimes they need special tools that simply do not exist in the medical world. 3D printing allows doctors to design and print ideal problem-solvers for individual surgeries, as problems arise. The tools printed are not only patient-specific but sterile.
The technologies we use for medical reasons today have taken hundreds of years of research to develop. Sometimes, older technologies work just fine, while new ones are beginning to expand our horizons not only about saving lives but also about improving care, our quality of life and our lifespans.