Patient went to the doctor for tonsillitis, and a chest X-ray revealed a growth on his fifth rib caused by a congenital defect. This type of growth could worsen and cause pulmonary problems later in life, so his doctors decided the rib should be removed. The surgery replaced the tumorous rib with a 3D printed rib took at Tokuda Hospital in Bulgaria, a first for the country. The rib needed to have exactly the same dimensions as the original rib, so 3D printing was chosen due to its ability to accurately reproduce organic shapes. Replacing the missing rib with a 3D printed segment with the same shape, curve, width, and thickness was possible with the use of a 3DGence 3D printer.
Jörg Goldhahn, MD, MAS, deputy head of the Institute for Translational Medicine at ETH Zurich, Switzerland says that artificial intelligence systems simulate human intelligence by learning, reasoning, and self correction. This technology has the potential to be more accurate than doctors at making diagnoses and performing surgical interventions. It has a “near unlimited capacity” for data processing and subsequent learning, and can do this at a speed that humans cannot match.Increasing amounts of health data, from apps, personal monitoring devices, electronic medical records, and social media platforms are being brought together to give machines as much information as possible about people and their diseases. At the same time machines are “reading” and taking account of the rapidly expanding scientific literature.”The notion that today’s physicians could approximate this knowledge by keeping abreast of current medical research while maintaining close contacts with their patients is an illusion not least because of the sheer volume of data,” says Goldhahn.Machine learning is also not subject to the same level of potential bias seen in human learning that reflects cultural influences and links with particular institutions, for example.
“Computers aren’t able to care for patients in the sense of showing devotion or concern for the other as a person, because they are not people and do not care about anything. Sophisticated robots might show empathy as a matter of form, just as humans might behave nicely in social situations yet remain emotionally disengaged because they are only performing a social role.”
“Patients need to be cared for by people, especially when we are ill and at our most vulnerable. A machine will never be able to show us true comfort,” they say.
A company claims a few puffs on their e-cigarette packs your lungs with 10 times the recommended daily dose of vitamin B12. Other products contain a host of vitamins including A, C or D or other nutrients such as amino acids and collagen—all in a liquid that is vaporized on a heated metal coil, then inhaled.
Companies making these devices say they are designed for wellness, and that science guides their formulations to make them as healthy as possible. However, scientists say the research the vaping industry uses to back such claims is not up to date, or is being presented out of context and they know literally nothing about the safety or efficacy of inhaling vitamins.
Guenther Hochhaus, pharmacologist at the University of Florida who studies drug delivery in the lungs says vaping vitamins is “theoretically possible,”however, “It would have to go deep into the lungs” where the membranes are thinnest and most permeable, he says. But until more detailed studies are completed, and how well the lung actually does take in nutrients is up for debate.
The budding vape wellness industry itself seems divided over what is useful or safe when it comes to inhaling nutrients. “There are a lot of snake oil salesmen out there. We’re not a gimmick, and we’re here to help,” says George Michalopoulos, founder of VitaminVape. He says he created the company because vegans like himself often need an extra hit of vitamin B12. But he chose not to include collagen nor vitamin C or D over worries those nutrients could be unsafe to vape. “I would put vitamin D in because people are low in vitamin D—but it turns out that inhalation of vitamin D might be toxic,” he says. “We thought the only real science performed on what you can inhale was with B12.”
Other vitamin vape makers disagree. Avi Kwitel, co-founder and CEO of Sparq, a company developing a product called Vitamin Air, says “We did want to use B vitamins but we veered away from them,”and “There were reports that came out that high amounts of B12—taken orally—were causing lung cancer in males.” (The study he was referring to, carried out at The Ohio State University, showed a correlation between men who took B12 and B6 supplements and higher cancer rates). Instead, Kwitel says their company chose to include vitamin D in their formula because of a 2016 study in which University of California, Los Angeles, researchers had baby rats inhale vitamin D. The study showed “how inhaling vitamin D is a potentially promising and safe strategy to consider,” he says.
However, Virender Rehan—the University of California, Los Angeles, neonatologist who conducted that research—balks at this interpretation. he says “He is really shocked that somebody would accept that study to claim that vitamins can be inhaled to improve health, particularly in adults,” he says. Vitamin D deficiencies can lead to lung development problems in newborns, and the study was partly to see if inhaling vitamin D could fix that problem in rats, he says. “But [it was] also to make sure that not much vitamin is absorbed [into the bloodstream],” he adds. Too much vitamin D can be toxic, especially for newborns.
Google has delivered further evidence that AI could become a valuable tool in detecting cancer. The company’s researchers have developed a deep learning tool that can spot metastatic (advanced) breast cancer with a greater accuracy than pathologists when looking at slides. The team trained its algorithm (Lymph Node Assistant, aka LYNA) to recognize the characteristics of tumors using two sets of pathological slides, giving it the ability to spot metastasis in a wide variety of conditions. The result was an AI system that could tell the difference between cancer and non-cancer slides 99 percent of the time, even when looking for extremely small metastases that humans might miss.
Former Nestle chief Peter Brabeck-Letmathe has said personalised diets and ‘individual nutrient cocktails’ are the future of nutrition ( Rex Features )
Nestle, the world’s largest food company, has joined the trend for personalized nutrition with a blend of artificial intelligence, DNA testing and the modern obsession with Instagramming food.
The program, that began in Japan, could provide the Swiss company with a wealth of data about customers’ wellness and diet as it pivots towards consumers who are seeking to improve their health and longevity.
In Japan, some 100,000 users of the “Nestle Wellness Ambassador” program send pictures of their food via the popular Line app that then recommends lifestyle changes and specially formulated supplements. The program can cost $600 (£463) a year for capsules that make nutrient-rich teas, smoothies and other products such as vitamin-fortified snacks.
The company is trying to figure out the algorithm between the test results and the genetic information and what they recommend as a solution.
Researchers at the University of California San Diego are developing an m Health platform that can predict a consumer’s blood pressure from wearable data and offer health and wellness advice to keep those readings healthy.
Sujit Dey, Director of the Center for Wireless Communications at UCSD’s Jacobs School of Engineering and a professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, and Po-Han Chiang, a graduate student in the Mobile Systems Design Lab, developed an algorithm based on sleep, exercise and blood pressure data taken from eight patients who wore a Fitbit Charge HR and Omron Evolve wireless blood pressure monitor for 30 days.
According to their study, presented at the recent IEEE Healthcom 2018 conference, Dey and Chiang were able to track how certain activities affected one’s blood pressure. For instance, boosting one test subject’s activity helped lower average systolic blood pressure by 15.4 percent and their diastolic blood pressure by 14.2 percent in one week; while convincing another subject to go to bed earlier led to a 3.6 percent drop in systolic blood pressure and 6.6 percent decrease in average diastolic blood pressure from the previous week.
In New York, the Uniformed Fire Officers Association of New York City (UFOA), representing some 2,600 active members and 5,000 retirees, and digital health company Qardio have launched a remote patient monitoring program in which firefighters, both active and retired, are monitoring their blood pressure with the QardioArm mHealth device and Qardio app and sharing that data with their primary care providers.
Visitors stare at babies in incubators at Martin Couney’s New York World’s Fair attraction, 1939-1940. New York Public Library
The early part of the 20th century, Martin Couney’s sideshow attraction at New York City’s Coney Island featured premature babies in incubators. The relatively new technology offered infants around-the-clock care that hospitals didn’t provide. By one estimate, Couney saved the lives of 6,500 infants.
Developed for infants in the 1880s, in Paris, Couney first displayed incubators—with babies—at the Berlin Exposition in 1896. From there he traveled to more expositions, including an event in London in 1897 and the Pan-American Exposition in Buffalo in 1901. But in 1903 he settled in the U.S. to run his babies-in-incubators summertime sideshow, which would continue until the early 1940s.