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Kaitlyn Mirabella

Is a contributor to The Almost Doctor’s Channel.

Social Rejection And Alcoholism

Source: Pixibay We all know that there’s a distinct connection between leading a miserable life and alcoholism. Sometimes, cause, consequence, and correlation become inextricably tangled within the vicious cycle of heavy drinking and personal misfortune. A recent study, however, has shone a light into the connection between alcoholism and social rejection. It’s an important finding, which has implications across the board – on a healthcare level, it could help us to both prevent and treat alcoholism in vulnerable people. On a societal level, it demonstrates the kind of changes we need to make in order to keep the (fast-growing) spectre of alcoholism at bay. The study, published by the Research Society on Alcoholism, saw participants use their smartphones to record social interaction and personal alcohol usage for fourteen consecutive days. Researchers then analyzed the style of interactions recorded, and the alcohol usage on the days when they occurred. They found that there was an association between rejective social experiences and the amount of alcohol drunk, with those who had had interactions classified as ‘rejective’ tending to drink more than those who had not. Researchers were keen to stress that the closeness of the relationship in question appeared to be a significant factor. Those who had experienced rejection from those they considered ‘close’ were significantly more likely to drink heavily on the days when said interactions occurred than those who had experienced...

Contact Lenses With Biosensors Could Change Glucose Monitoring

Diabetes has been a huge problem in the U.S. in recent years, and those inflicted have a very difficult time managing their blood glucose levels. Glucose monitoring is typically done with devices that measure glucose in blood drops. Not only is this procedure uncomfortable, but it is also difficult to get diabetic patients to comply to regular visits to their physician to get the procedure done.   What if you could monitor your patient’s glucose levels with…contact lenses? And have the data sent to your smartphone? Yes, that’s right. Contact lenses embedded with transparent biosensors could allow doctors and patients to monitor glucose levels without the invasive prick-and-test approach.   Image: Source   Gregory S. Herman, PhD developed a compound composed of indium gallium zinc oxide (IGZO), a semiconductor used in displays on TVs, smartphones, and tablets. Herman investigated in this technology’s biomedical applications.   He speculated that bio-sensing contact lenses could provide several benefits, including: – Reducing the risk of diabetes-related health problems – Eliminating painful continuous glucose monitoring systems – Improving compliance in patients – Increasing speed of detection and gathering of data   To test his idea, Herman and his colleagues used a biosensor with a transparent sheet of IGZO transistors and glucose oxidase, an enzyme that catalyzes the oxidation of glucose to gluconic acid…aka breaks down glucose. “As a result, the pH level in the...

Low-Tech Has Major Impact on Laparoscopic Surgery

What is laparoscopic surgery? Laparoscopic surgery, also referred o as minimally invasive surgery (MIS), describes the performance of surgical procedures with the assistance of a video camera and several thin instruments.   Image: Source   Thanks to researchers and small business entrepreneurs, surgeons now have access to a new type of low-tech instrument to perform these complex, minimally invasive procedures. This technology provides more dexterity, precision, and intuitive control than traditional instruments. It’s also simpler to use, requires less training, AND is less expensive.   Watch the video below to see it in action!   Video: Source James Geiger, MD, professor of surgery at University of Michigan, and his colleague, professor of engineering, Shorya Awtar, have developed a low-tech, and relatively inexpensive surgical tool that increases the precision of a surgeon’s hand, arm, and wrist movements during minimally invasive surgery (MIS). The FlexDex platform is designed to improve the accuracy of multiple endoscopic and laparoscopic tools. The innovations in parallel kinematics, virtual center of rotation, and flexure mechanisms comes from research teams at the Precision Systems Design Lab at the University of Michigan.   Featured From: The Doctor’s Channel   Featured Image:...