As robots become more advanced, they will fulfill more roles in society and adopt more jobs. However, many humans do not like the prospect of interacting with robots or other autonomous machines — I personally am guilty of this as I prefer to deposit my checks with a human teller rather than at an ATM. This resistance raises the question of how comfortable humans feel interacting with autonomous robots, and Tasmanian doctors took this question to its logical conclusion: would people want to talk with and be diagnosed by an autonomous robot doctor?
According to The Advocate, seventy staff members of the North West Regional Hospital in Tasmania, Australia, recently participated in a study involving SoftBank Robotic’s Nao robot. Dr. Balaji Bikshandi, the lead investigator, wanted to “find out if the robot can display compassion and empathy, and inspire trust in potential patients.”
The study was relatively straightforward: the robot, dubbed “Dr. Nao” by the hospital staff, asked participants medical questions and requested them to perform simple exercise tests. The research team recorded the staff members’ responses and reactions. According to ABC News (that’s the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, not the American Broadcasting Company) correspondent Carla Howarth, many people who participated responded positively to Dr. Nao, including intensive care nurse unit manager Trudy Segger.
“Even though he’s a robot, I’ve bonded with him,” explained Segger. “They could certainly help us and assist us. We can see lots of potential for use in the clinical setting.”
Howarth even managed to record several seconds of Dr. Nao in action and posted the video on Twitter:
Dr. Bikshandi claims that Dr. Nao is “still in the research phase,” so patients at North West Regional Hospital shouldn’t expect to see the robotic physician for several years, assuming they ever will. According to consultant Robyn Westcombe, “There are lots of medical and ethical hoops to jump through before we can use it.”
Autonomous robot doctors such as Dr. Nao have a lot of potential to help hospitals, especially when they are swamped with work and human doctors/nurses can’t diagnose patients in a timely manner. While we are a long way off before robot doctors are autonomous enough to take our blood pressure or accurately diagnose a disease, Dr. Nao is a necessary step, as we need to know whether or not patients are even willing to let robots perform those routine procedures.
Medicine and Health
Your Chance Of Contracting This Rare Eye Infection More Than Triples If You Wear Reusable Contact Lenses
If you wear soft reusable contact lenses instead of soft disposable ones, your chance of getting an uncommon eye infection rises by almost four times. These sobering conclusions come from study conducted by the University College London (UCL) Institute of Ophthalmology and Moorfields Eye Hospital, which looked at what variables could make someone more likely to get Acanthamoeba keratitis (AK).
“In recent years we have seen an increase of Acanthamoeba keratitis in the UK and Europe, and while the infection is still rare, it is preventable and warrants a public health response,” said lead researcher Professor John Dart in a statement.
“Contact lenses are generally very safe but are associated with a small risk of microbial keratitis, most commonly caused by bacteria, and which is the only sight threatening complication of their use. Given that an estimated 300 million people across the globe wear contact lenses, it is important that people know how to minimise their risks for developing keratitis.”
Over 200 patients were recruited by Dart and colleagues, 83 of them had AK and the remaining 122 were taken to the Moorfields Eye Hospital for various ailments. The second served as a control group so that the researchers could determine what risk factors made someone more likely to develop the corneal infection.
According to their findings, people who wear reusable soft contact lenses had a 3.8-times higher risk of acquiring AK than people who wear daily disposable lenses. Wearing lenses while sleeping and taking a shower raised risk by 3.9 and 3.3 times, respectively. According to the researchers’ calculations, switching to daily disposable lenses might avoid 30-62 percent of AK cases in the UK, and this may hold true for other nations as well.
“Previous studies have linked AK to wearing contact lenses in hot tubs, swimming pools or lakes, and here we have added showers to that list, underlining that exposure to any water when wearing lenses should be avoided,” said first author, Associate Professor Nicole Carnt of the University of New South Wales, Sydney, and UCL Institute of Ophthalmology and Moorfields Eye Hospital. “Public pools and coastal authorities could help reduce this risk by advising against swimming in contact lenses.”
Even though sight loss from AK is uncommon, it can occur in extreme cases, which is why the researchers decided to further explore potential risk factors. The team is working to find ways to reduce the annual incidence of AK, which is estimated to affect 1 in 20,000 contact lens wearers in the UK.
Opthalmology published the paper.
Top Rated Dentist Apps for 2018
Looking at today’s technology it is kind of hard to believe that 20 or 30 years ago we didn’t know what a smartphone was, right? Hell, most of us (kids and adults alike) didn’t even have a mobile phone! And those of us who had one were in complete awe over games like Snake or Pong!
Therefore, I think that a quick look at how mobile games evolved over time is a true testament to the speed of technology. I mean, going from Snake played on a 1990 Nokia phone to a high-graphics game played on the latest Android or iOS smart device is a huge leap!
Even more, nowadays we can run complex apps on our mobile devices, and some are quite impressive. Let’s take apps designed for dentists and their patients – a simple search will reveal a plethora of options, so I chose only the top-rated ones as an example.
This is an app, for iOS users, that makes a dentist’s work with patients easier. The app is equipped with over 200 illustrations, images, and animations that showcase the effects of various dental conditions. This way, a dentist can literally illustrate how a specific disease will progress in time if not properly treated.
DDS GP can help explain some of the most common dental problems such s decay, cracks, or periodontal disease. Furthermore, it accepts edits and drawings which the user can save, and it helps to create individual treatment plans for each patient.
Now, since it’s such a well-detailed app, the price is a bit steep, but for those interested to learn, there are more options at healthyteeth.org (and for free).
If you have to wear braces or you’re planning on installing some in the near feature, this app may be of great use. The app provides useful information, videos, and pictures on how to care for braces and what to do if any problems would show up.
Designed by a dentist for dentists everywhere, this free app for iOS provides users with animations and 3D video representations of various dental procedures. Given that some patients are new to the field and some may even be fearful of some treatment methods, DentalNavi is a fantastic way to illustrate what happens in a patient’s mouth while you’re working on it.
The app has several different modules such as implantology, interactive jaw movement, and checking for occlusions. Everything is highly graphical, which is why communication with your patients will be improved significantly.
My Dental Clinic
A free Android app that can help you manage the activity of an entire dental clinic – cool, right? You won’t have to deal with papers and difficult planners since everything will be readily accessible using your phone!
The app allows you to keep patients’ records such as personal information, notes, appointments, dental charts, and more. Furthermore, you have the possibility to call a patient directly from the app, and the appointments can be sent to your Android calendar.
Overall, this is a fantastic virtual planner for small to medium clinics, and most users seem happy with the features provided.
As you can see, the world of mobile apps has evolved from low-graphics games to high-end graphics and advanced apps that can keep up with various services at once. Isn’t this advancement impressive?
Medicine and Health
You Will Be Surprised By These Recent Developments in Mattress Technology
The industry presents you such a wide variety of options to choose from when it comes to mattresses than it ever did before. As a matter of fact, presently, you have mattresses that are estimated to last you another 40-years; that’s approximately the major part of your life or the rest of it! The flocking, however, comes with its own level of technical work for us; we have more work trying out all the new brands coming up by the day as we compile our information. All a worthy experience – some of these beds have you bewitched to them; you just don’t feel like getting up at all.
But what are these improvements that have come to change the face of the bed industry as we knew it? What are the technological advances made to beds that you probably haven’t heard of? Some of these leaps are present in the Top Mattress only; you need to be prepared to do some decision making for a change by the end of this article – be sure to buy yourself and loved ones the nights they deserve.
The Memory Foam Treat
Originally, memory foam was only available and used by NASA to make their pilot’s uniform. But when it was released to the public in the late seventies, we had opportunists springing forth and making the first foam beds. Right now, different types of foams are being made for the best bed make. Organic foam and synthetic foam all find their way to the top beds in the market. Others are a hybrid make involving a mixture of latex and synthetic foam. All these provide different levels of firmness and response to pressure and temperatures.
Memory foam beds are usually preferable and recommended to the side and back sleepers at times. This is because the foam creates more depressions and contouring with the body preventing much pressure on the spine. Stomach sleepers and back sleepers (not majorly) need more firm options for a perfect spine alignment.
The Bed-In-A-Box Concept
Most of you bought your custom beds which were shipped as they are; you had to ask for help as you ferried it from the door to your room. Now consider a whole queen-sized bed coming inside a box, and all you have to do is open the box once you reach your room! This is the technology that will wipe away all shipping charges from bed provider stores and bring about a cool convenience to the client. That’s about as cool as it can get.
Meet the Smart Mattress
Need to sleep at angles? Easy, adjust it! Are you a snorer which is affecting your partner? Easy! Smart Motion technology literally has your back. The wireless remote controlled bed has a head and foot massage option due to its adjustability. The wonder bed also has an automatic alarm system that determines when the sleeper is in the light sleep stages and hence calculates when best to wake them up. This comes together with a customizable coach that collects your sleep data and offers better sleep recommendations upon comparing your data with people with your characteristics. The Sleeptrack app pre-installed is also designed to have meditative music to help you fall asleep faster. Can sleeping get any easier than that really?
Sleep Cool Beds
Sweating during the night can be quite a bore – especially if you have the same issue during the day. Sleeping with the windows open or buying fans to cool the room doesn’t seem to work for you. Take it easy; you are not alone. Good news is, there is something for you out there.
The market now has beds popping up with a top layer infused with gel to allow for breathability, thus, one sleeps as cool as they want. No hot nights anymore – sleep as sound as you’ve always wanted.
There is absolutely no more need to go around complaining of a consistent back pain or shoulder pains as a result of your unfulfilling nights. You need a mattress upgrade that suits your preferences. Some of these beds are really pocket-friendly. You’ll, nevertheless, be needed to dig deeper if you want to access the best that the industry has to offer.
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