Today, doctors halfway around the world from their patients can perform surgeries by means of remote surgery or telesurgery. This is just the first example in a long list of amazing medical breakthroughs that show the results of medical technology marching ahead. The following nine breakthroughs have occurred in the last year, and new wonders are constantly being created.
DNA Modification that Treats Skin Disease
A genetic disease known as junctional epidermolysis bullosa has been successfully treated in Europe by means of DNA modification. The condition leaves the skin fragile and thin as paper because of faults in the DNA programming. The treatment involved removing a patch of healthy skin from the afflicted boy that contained DNA with faults and repaired it in the laboratory with a customized virus. When grafted back onto the boy over several operations, the modified skin grew successfully and is fully healthy two years later.
Liquid biopsies are a non-invasive, rapid method of early cancer detection. They can uncover ctDNA, or cell-free circulating tumor DNA, which is 100 times more prevalent in our blood that are tumor cells. This ctDNA is shed from tumors into the bloodstream. With this method, routine checkups for cancer will soon grow easier and more effective, permitting cancer care to be individually programmed for each person.
Augmented Reality for Surgery
Using a display that is worn before the eyes to overlay information on the world before you, augmented reality can assist surgeons in visualizing bodily regions that the naked eye cannot see. HoloLens goggles, according to Duke University, can change the means in which doctors operate. 3D images are projected onto the real objects which are priceless for blind surgeries like extraventricular drain placement.
Brain Chemical Imbalance Changes in Drug Addicts
Drugs cause alterations to brain chemistry that make it difficult for regular drug users to stop using drugs, even when there are difficult consequences. Researchers have created something called a serotonin 2C receptor therapeutic to restore the weak brain signals caused by drug use. Because of this, people receiving this treatment may perform less drug-seeking behaviors, meaning that recovery is far more attainable as a goal. It has thus far been found to be effective in mice.
People struck by the flu can take a medication called Tamiflu for relief. It makes the symptoms tolerable but still requires a pair of doses a day for five days. Consider, instead, a pill that eliminates the flu virus in an average of 24 hours, requiring only one dose. This new drug has been demonstrated by a Japanese laboratory and provides nearly instant relief. Also, killing the virus with greater speed cuts down on the aspects of contagion.
Peanut Allergy Treatment
People with peanut allergies must avoid the legumes at all costs for the prevention of complications. However, a study found that upon consuming capsules containing peanut flour, 67 percent of kids in the test could tolerate a pair of peanuts at the investigation’s end. This triumph is notable because if a person’s system can adapt to tolerate at least one peanut, the life-threatening reactions will be substantially minimized.
Spinal Stimulation and Paralysis
Swiss researchers reported that the science regarding spinal stimulation has now been fine-tuned to such lengths that three patients who had been paralyzed are now capable of walking. Electrodes had been implanted to provide electrical stimulation directly to the spinal cord; this has been shown to allow movement of legs that had been previously paralyzed. This method is still not seen as a cure for paralysis, but an entirely new means in which rehabilitation can be carried out.
Among the most effective means for minimization of inflammation and pain, platelet-rich plasma or PRP is a regenerative therapy that can be tried for those with foot and ankle injuries who have not had success with traditional therapies. Dr. Velimir Petkov, DPM, a leading podiatrist in Clifton, NJ, calls this treatment revolutionary. “PRP therapy can be considered a natural therapy because it uses a person’s own blood to heal joints or treat pain by increasing blood flow to the injured area” Dr Petkov comments. PRP therapy allows you to stimulate the healing of acute or chronic injuries by introducing a concentrated amount of platelets which bring growth factors to the injured area.
“In podiatry, PRP therapy is suitable for treating conditions such as foot and ankle Arthritis, joint pain, plantar fasciitis, shin splints, chronic inflammatory conditions and acute or chronic ligament injuries. Sometimes injuries can heal faster. PRP therapy can offer more long-lasting results versus the short-acting benefits of corticosteroid injections.” Dr. Petkov adds.
Cancer Vaccine Trials
Stanford University Researchers announced they would commence with the first trials of a unique cancer therapy in humans. Prior tests on mice found that particular injections of immune-stimulating agents could eliminate all traces of cancer as well as prohibiting potential metastases build-ups. The study is led by Rd. Ronald Levy, an oncology professor at Stanford, and the human trials will involve fifteen lymphoma patients. This incredible breakthrough could be an all-new treatment for cancer’s eradication.
Medical research and medical technologies are improving – and saving – lives every day. The breakthroughs listed above are developments worth watching, and more incredible innovations are always in the works.