New and credible medical innovations are coming up by the thousands every year, but this one is set to become a part of our daily lives and improve our healthcare practices drastically.
With the IT revolution making smartphones a regular fixture in our world, entrepreneurial students and medical companies are constantly developing unique ‘Mobile Medical Applications.’
These apps, though initially created to assist mostly doctors, are now benefitting millions of people helping them understand their health conditions, monitor it on a routine basis and in general, get a better grip over their well-being.
The trend started with Apple (the iosappstore) and now such applications are available for free download on Android phones and tablets (Google Play Store) too.
Doctors tell us that these are a rage with hea-lthcare practitioners and people in the West, though they are yet to catch up in India.
“I myself use at least 10 such apps,” says Dr Neeraj Bhalla, senior consultant and director, Cardiology, BLK Super Speciality Hospital.
“For example, the Isabel Healthcare Diagnosis Decision-Support System has a database of over 6,000 diseases and only needs a doctor to feed in the symptoms to get the right diagnosis. The QxMD Calculator, on the other hand, assesses treatment outcomes and survival rates in seconds,” he reveals. Perhaps the most radical Mobile Medical Application available today is the ECG app provided by a medical company AliveCor.
This application relieves a person of the need to even visit a hospital for an electrocardiogram.
A small device, when rested on the fingers or the chest, records an ECG, transmits the signal to the app on the mobile which then sends a report to the concerned doctor too.
“Imagine how beneficial this is to suspected heart patients. Within 30 seconds, they can get to know if their shoulder ache was indeed a heart attack. In normal circumstances, people ignore such symptoms or reach the hospital so late, that it’s already fatal,” points out Dr Mukesh Goel, HoD, Cardiovascular Surgery, Asian Institute of Medical Sciences, Faridabad.
Other such Mobile Medical Applications which can help you monitor your health parameters at home are those for diabetes and blood pressure.
You only need to log in your blood sugar levels, heart rate, pulse pressure etc regularly to get a referral chart on how you are faring, if you need to change your medication, up the dosage or bring it down.
Some wonderful mobile medical apps are available for women and girls to chart their menstrual cycle, get to know the most fertile dates etc.
The WebMD Pregnancy App and WEbMD Baby App are also highly useful for expecting women and new mothers.
They can get all the tips on prenatal and postnatal baby care on this app.
“A very popular category of mobile medical apps in the West is fitness apps,” says Dr Satish Kaul, general physician, Columbia Asia Hospital, “These aid you with monitoring the calories you are consuming, the number of calories you are burning while working out and also provide you diet charts.”
“Approved by the Food and Drug Administration, USA, these are excellent to mind your weight,” he adds.