Having trouble with your vision? Get the $2 add-on to your smartphone and get your eyes refracted with a text to get your new eyeglasses or contact lenses made.
Have a suspicious skin lesion that might be cancer? Just take a picture with your smartphone and you can get a quick text back in minutes with a determination of whether you need to get a biopsy or not.
Does your child have an ear infection? Just get the scope attachment to your smartphone and get a 10x magnified high-resolution view of your child’s eardrums and send them for automatic detection of whether antibiotics will be needed.
Worried about glaucoma? You can get the contact lens with an embedded chip that continuously measures eye pressure and transmits the data to your phone.
These are just a few examples of the innovative smartphone software and hardware — apps and “adds” technology — that have been developed and will soon be available for broad use.”
The great inflection of medicine is about to empower consumers to be able to read — not just a one-off measurement (like a blood pressure) but also data for all their relevant physiologic metrics, continuously, on the go. It will provide insights about each individual that we did not have before, such as how blood pressure fluctuates during a stressful event or during sleep.
Such data will be graphed on one’s smartphone or tablet, and can be sent to a doctor, caregiver, or even a social network. And this is the precursor to having the key parts of your genome sequence — that which interacts with various prescription medications — maintained on your phone. Your phone, your DNA, your data.”
Rather than waiting an average of one hour for an office visit that lasts about seven minutes with the doctor, who typically spends the time looking at a keyboard rather than the patient, why aren’t we doing many office visits with secure video connects or even Skype and FaceTime? And having real face time.
The relevant data on blood pressure, glucose, or whatever relates to the primary concern could be readily transmitted just before or during the visit. With the growing physician shortage that looms ahead, it’s all the more reason to embrace a new form of unplugged medicine. Note to my fellow physicians: It’s time to let go!”