Medical Technology in the Blogosphere

The blog reviewed here is Medgadget. As the name suggests, the Medgadget blog focuses on medical technology. The blog reports on a diverse range of technology which covers the full spectrum of medical specialities. In the About section the bloggers explain that ‘Medgadget’ is written by a group of doctors and bioengineers. The blog design features a white background with a central white panel containing the posts. There are multiple subscribing options available in the top right hand corner. The blog is indexed according to speciality and also at the bottom of the screen posts can be accessed according to page number of which there were over 1000 at the time of writing. There are a number of social media options for sharing the posts. The posts themselves are generously illustrated and provide title, author and date as well as being comment enabled. The bloggers posts at a prodigious rate and I have sampled only 50 of the pages when reviewing the blog although even within this sample I found a large number of articles of interest.

Diagnostic kits and related technology being developed for Alzheimer’s Disease are covered in posts here and here. Virtual reality and MRI are combined to investigate Parkinson’s Disease with technology discussed in this post. The authors also cover innovations in neuroimaging including this post on imaging myelin and a dedicated head MRI. Head temperature and sleep is covered in this post while in another post there is coverage of a sleep shirt and a sensor based alarm clock in another post. Genetic analysis is facilitated with a number of devices including this microRNA analysis-ipod linked device, low cost DNA amplification technology, an open source PCR kit, a chip for analysing cellular genetics as well as a ‘personal genome machine‘. A range of microscope technologies were reviewed including a low cost holographic microscope covered in this postStimulated Emission Depletion (STED) – an optical microscopy approach which enables visualisation of cellular functioning as well as Spatial Light Interference Microscopy (SLIM) again useful at looking at cellular functioning. There are also software solutions to problems including the use of Facebook and Twitter in a public health campaign against Dengue Fever or using Google search patterns to track Dengue Fever, digital reference works including UpToDate, visualising large numbers of health records, connecting lonely older adults, digital textbook rentals, digital pathology, multilingual drug information software, designing workouts for specific muscle groups is the aim of this program, matching patients with clinical trials, Health Vault on the mobile, a map of brain interconnectivity and new medical tools in Wolfram Alpha. IBM’s Watson taking on a diagnostic challenge is covered in this post.

Other medical technology applications include telepresence which is covered in this post. There are other innovations such as this science exchange for outsourcing lab work, regenerating enamel, wireless monitoring of heart rate, bullet-proof skin (I had to double check this! It involves a combination of human skin cells and spider silk), a 3d surface imaging system, an 80-lead 3D ECG, a journal for health gaming, a mobile SPECT scanner, a bite counter for monitoring food intake, a social network for doctors, an EEG based device that facilitates movements, molecular analysis devices, steering wheel integrated EEG for driving, an open source pulse sensor, a hospital mattress that turns patients, the world’s largest cell biobank, a robot to help people at home, a polymer with properties similar to human vocal cords, antimicrobial fabrics, neurostimulation and migraines, hardware to enable iPad ECG’s and equipment for imaging intracranial blood flow. Genetically altered bacteria used to eradicate infections by other bacteria is an interesting approach covered in this post. iPad apps are very popular as in this check-in app for receptions, the Visible Body 3D Human Anatomy Atlas , visual monitoring software and diagnostic imaging pathways. In this post the author looks at the FDA’s plans to regulate the mobile medical applications market. Devices for sensory impairment or devicess that simulate the functions of sensory organs include these sonic gloves, a retinal prosthesis, vibrating gloves, an electronic tongue. Monitoring brain activity using EEG is covered in this post, while other medical innovations are covered as in this post on the Baroreflex stimulation and hypertension. There are posts on other interesting topics such as neuronal art. Along the way there are miscellaneous gems of information. For instance in this post we learn that the parathyroid glands autofluoresce allowing them to be visualised in vivo.

This is a very interesting blog which is updated very frequently and the authors succeed in finding current material to inspire and to illustrate just how quickly the medical field is changing and how many solutions to complex problems have been found and developed.

Appendix – Here is a list of the blogs reviewed to date by subject area 

Psychiatry: Ars Psychiatrica. Psychiatrist Dr Neil Scheurich looks at the intersection between the arts and psychiatry. There are lots of interesting articles (blog link here). Buckeye Psychiatry LLC. Blog by psychiatrist Dr Adam Brandemihl covers a variety of topics including tips on lifestyle and news updates (Blog link here). Biological Therapies in Psychiatry. Dr Alan Gelenberg writes about biological therapies in psychiatry (Blog link here). Carlat Psychiatry Blog. Blog by psychiatrist Dr Dan Carlat examining the relationship between pharmaceutical companies and medical education (blog link here). CorePsych Blog. Psychiatrist Dr Charles Parker focuses on the science of psychiatry with interesting insights into investigations and management (blog link here). Corpus Callosum. Blog by Psychiatrist who writes on a variety of topics with interesting posts on medication  (Blog link here). Dr Dymphna’s Diliberations. Blog by psychiatrist Dr Elizabeth Courdes with a focus on pscyhotherapy and pharmacotherapy (Blog link here). Dr Shock. Blog by Assistant Professor of Psychiatry Dr Walter Van Der Broek covering a variety of psychiatry related topics including the intersection of psychiatry and the internet and developments in psychiatric treatment. (Blog link here). In Practice Blog. Blog by Dr Peter Kramer with a focus on depression. (Blog link here). Dr Jeff and Dr Tanya’s Blog. Psychiatrists Dr Jeffrey Speller and Dr Tanya Korkosz write about psychiatry and also provide useful information on common conditions and treatments (Blog link here). Mark’s Psychiatry. Blog by psychiatrists Dr Tracey Marks on a variety of psychiatry related topics (Blog link here). Minds on Film. Blog by psychiatrist Dr Almeida on the intersection between psychiatry and film (Blog link here). Movies and Mental Illness. Blog by a team of a psychiatrist, psychologist and nurse examining mental illness in the movies in preparation for a book on the subject (Blog link here). Practice What I Preach. A child psychiatrist becomes a mother and describes her experiences (Blog link here). Princeton Psychiatry Blog. Blog about psychiatry by Dr Yitzhak Shnaps (Blog link here). PsychBabel. Blog on psychiatry by Dr S Cho (Blog link here). Psychiatry Fun Blog. Blog where the author advocates a more relaxed approach to writing about psychiatry (Blog link here). Psychiatry in the Mainstream. Blog by Dr Lawrence Choy on psychiatry in popular culture (Blog link here). Shrink Rap Blog. Engaging psychiatry blog by three psychiatrists with lots of interesting articles (Blog link here). The Psychiatrist Blog. Blog by Dr Michelle Tempest looking at the intersection between psychiatry and politics (Blog link here). The Sports Psychiatrist. Blog by Dr Zaakir Yoonas about the intersection between sports and psychiatry (Blog link here)

Psychotherapy: Beck Institute Blog. Blog about CBT from the Beck Institute (Blog link here). EMDR International Association Blog. Blog about EMDR with frequent updates (Blog link here). Jung Currents. Blog about Jung by psychologist Sparky (Blog link here). Jung at Heart. Blog by psychotherapist on Jungian psychoanalysis. Cheryl Fuller (Blog link here). Modern Psychoanalysis. Blog about psychoanalysis although last article is dated 2008 (Blog link here). Sara Roizen. Fine art muralist. A creative blog by artist Sara Roizen who is training to become an art therapist (Blog link here). Spread the Word. Blog about EMDR (Blog link here).

Psychology: Advances in the History of Psychology.   (Blog link here). Clinical Psychology and Psychiatry. A closer look. Blog providing a critique of psychiatry and psychology research (Blog link here). CogSci Librarian Review. This is a blog by a librarian with an interest in cognitive neuroscience. Lots of useful insights into the resources librarians offer as well as cognitive neuroscience links (Blog link here). Dr Deb. A psychology blog with articles covering many different areas and which are accessible for a general audience (Blog link here). Exploring Psychology. Blog by psychologist David Webb exploring psychology (Blog link here). F.A.B.L.E – Fictional Aut0biography of Life Experience. Blog about the intersection of literature, neurobiology and psychology by Cole Bitting (Blog link here). Mind Hacks. Popular long-running blog looking at psychology and neuroscience issues (Blog link here). Positive Psychology News Daily. Blog about positive psychology news (Blog link here). PsychCentral. Heavyweight longstanding psychology blog by Dr John Grohal who also runs a forum at his website (Blog link here). Psychotherapy Brown Bag Blog. Blog with insightful analysis of psychological research by Michael and Joye Anstis (Blog link here). We’re Only Human. Blog by Wray Herbert on psychological research appearing in the journal ‘Psychological Science’ (Blog link here).

Anthropology: Linguistic Anthropology. Interesting blog about linguistic anthropology relevant to a wide variety of subjects including human evolution (Blog link here). Somatosphere. Science, medicine and Anthropology. Looking at medicine and science from an anthropological perspective (Blog link here).

Blogs about Life with an Illness: Aethelread the Unread. Insightful blog by Aethelread who has recurrent depression and writes engagingly about a number of issues (Blog link here). A Survivor’s Guide to Huntington’s Disease. Blog by Angela F who has been diagnosed with Huntington’s Disease and whose mother also has Huntington’s Disease (Blog link here). Bipolar Mo. Blog by a nurse with Bipolar Illness who is also a musician writing about aspects of his life (Blog link here). Lawyers with Depression. Blog by lawyer Daniel Lukasic about his experience of depression and related subjects (Blog link here).

Blogs about Older Adults: GeriPal: Geriatrics and Palliative Care Blog. Blog about older adult medical topics (Blog link here). Geriatric Pharmacotherapy Blog. Blog about medication treatment in older adults (Blog link here). Global Ageing Network Blog. Blog about ageing with an international slant (Blog link here). The Good Old Age Blog. Blog about healthy aging (Blog link here). The Intentional Aging Collective. Blog about ageing (Blog link here). The New Old Age Blog. Blog about ageing in the New York Times (Blog link here). The 70 Something Blog. Account of life as a septagenerian (Blog link here).

Dementia: Alzheimer’s Disease Blog. Blog about Alzheimer’s Disease (Blog link here). The Tangled Neuron. Blog by a lady, who’s father with dementia passed away, learning about and discussing dementia (Blog link here).

Evolution: Evolutionary Psychiatry. Blog by Dr Emily Deans about Evolutionary Psychiatry (Blog link here). John Hawks Weblog. Blog by Professor John Hawks, anthropologist who specialises in population genetics of human evolution (Blog link here). Laboratory for Evolutionary Endocrinology. Blog about evolutionary aspects of endocrinology (Blog link here). Origins – A History of Beginnings. Blog featuring discussion of and essays about Charles Darwin (Blog link  here). Why Evolution is True. Blog by Dr Jerry Coynes and colleagues looking at evolution (Blog link here).

Genetics: The Genetic Genealogist. Blog by a geneticist covering genealogy and related topics in genetics  (Blog link here).

Medical Ethics: Medical Ethics Blog. Interesting blog about medical ethics issues by Canadian Journalist Stuart Laidlaw (Blog link here).

Informatics: Allan’s Library. Blog about informatics (Blog link here). Bio Data Blog. Blogging about research software (Blog link here). Health Informatics blog. Blog on health informatics by Dr Chris Paton (Blog link here). Mobile Healthcare Blog. Blog about mobile healthcare technology (Blog link here). New Media Medicine Blog. Blog with useful links to health informatics resources (Blog link here). Open Medicine. Blog about health informatics (Blog link here). Open MRS. Blog about the development of an open health database (Blog link here). Science in the Open. Blog about open science Cameron Neylon (Blog link here). Significant Science. Blog by Hope Leman about the open science movement (Blog link here). The O’Really Blog. Blog by Duncan Hull on bioinformatics written in an accessible style (Blog link here). Wolfram Alpha Blog. Blog about Wolfram Alpha search engine (Blog link here).

Miscellaneous: Beaker – A Medical Research Blog. A blog relating to medical research at the Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute (Blog link here) Brains on Purpose. Blog with a focus on conflict resolution and related areas in neuroscience (Blog link here). Dream Journal. Blog about submitted dream content with analysis (Blog link here). Seth Godin’s Blog. Blog by popular author about many subjects (Blog link here). Singularity Hub. Blog with a focus on emerging health technologies (Blog link here). Stu’s News and Views. Frequent news and information updates about Multiple Sclerosis (Blog link here).

Neurology: Brain Disease’s Weblog. Blog by Assistant Professor of Neurology Dr Nitin Sethi looks at the neurological literature (Blog link here). Neurology Minutiae Blog. Blog featuring details of neurological cases and insights  (Blog link here).

Neuropathology: Neuropathology Blog. Interesting blog on neuropathology by Dr Brian Moore (Blog link here).

Neuroradiology: AJNR. Blog of the American Journal of Neuroradiology (Blog link here). Blogging about Magnetic Resonance Imaging (Blog link here).

Neuroscience: All in the Mind. Blog by science journalist Natasha Mitchell who also features in the radio show of the same name (Blog link here). Brain Posts. Dr Bill Yates writes about clinical neuroscience (Blog link here). Brain Stimulant. Blog looking at many interesting neuroscience articles including neural prosthetics and computational neuroscience (Blog link here). Citation Needed. Blog by neuroscientist Tal Yarkoni (Blog link here). Dharmendra S Modha’s Cognitive Computing Blog. Blog looking at IBM’s Blue Brain project and other developments in cognitive computing (Blog link here). The Frontal Cortex Blog. Blog by Jonas Lehrer about a variety of neuroscience subjects (Blog link here). The Mouse Trap. Blog by polymath Sandeep Gautam on neuroscience topics as well as interesting theories that he is developing (Blog link here). Neurocritic. Nice blog with critiques of neuroimaging studies and insights into neuroscience (Blog link here). Neuroskeptic. A neuroscientist who takes a ‘sceptical look at his own field’ (Blog link here). Nou Stuff. Blog by neuroscientist Maria Page covering lots of interesting research in neuroscience (Blog link here). On The Brain. Blog by neuroscientist Professor Michael Merzenich who focuses in particular on neural plasticity (Blog link here). Small Gray Matters. Insights into fMRI by a neuroscientist (Blog link here).

Nursing: Mental Nurse. Enjoyable blog by a group of mental health nurses with a range of perspectives on mental health issues. Sadly the blog has disappeared when the domain name lapsed. However ‘This Week in Mentalists’ a feature of the blog has found a home on another site here.

Occupational Therapy: ABC Therapeutics Weblog. Fascinating and at times poignant blog about occupational therapy with heavyweight analysis (Blog link here).

Organisations: Reviewing a Blog by Mind (Blog link here). Blogging about Research at the National Institute of Mental Health (Blog link here).

Palaeontology: Palaeoblog. Interesting blog by Dr Michael Ryan covering a wide array of material relevant to palaeontology (Blog link here).

Pharmacology: Furious Seasons. Blog by journalist Philip Dawdy who has Bipolar Illness and writes about a number of issues relating to psychiatry and pharma (Blog link here). Pharma Blog. Blog looking at pharmaceutical news giving a broad overview of developments in the field (Blog link here). Pharmacology Corner. Blog by Dr Flavio Guzman about pharmacology (Blog link here).

Primatology: Differential Biology Reader. Blog by genetics and psychology student Mark Adams comparing humans and other primates (Blog link here). Blog. Interesting blog about primatology (Blog link here).

Sociology: Everyday Sociology. A blog on sociology by a group of sociologists giving insights into contemporary events (Blog link here). The New Social Worker’s Blog. Insights into social work by a social worker student (Blog link here).

Statistics: Social Science Statistics Blog.  Engaging articles on social science statistics of particular relevance to those involved in social science research  (Blog link here).

An index of the site can be found here. The page contains links to all of the articles in the blog in chronological order. Twitter: You can follow ‘The Amazing World of Psychiatry’ Twitter by clicking on this link. Podcast: You can listen to this post on Odiogo by clicking on this link (there may be a small delay between publishing of the blog article and the availability of the podcast). It is available for a limited period. TAWOP Channel: You can follow the TAWOP Channel on YouTube by clicking on this link. Responses: If you have any comments, you can leave them below or alternatively e-mail Disclaimer: The comments made here represent the opinions of the author and do not represent the profession or any body/organisation. The comments made here are not meant as a source of medical advice and those seeking medical advice are advised to consult with their own doctor. The author is not responsible for the contents of any external sites that are linked to in this blog.

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