Predictions have been made by an independent Commission on the Future of Surgery which was set up by the UK’s Royal College of Surgeons that a raft of state-of-the-art technology is going to transform the way medical surgery is carried out.
According to the report, which was released towards the end of 2018, the advancements are expected to result in surgery becoming more personalized, more predictable, and a lot less invasive. A reduced risk of harm is anticipated too, as well as quicker recovery times once a patient has gone through an operation.
Richard Kerr, who was the chair of the Commission on the Future of Surgery — a group which involved some of the leading doctors, data experts, engineers, managers and patient representatives across the UK — commented: “We’re standing on the verge of transformative changes in surgery that have the potential to dramatically improve patients’ care, helping them to live healthier lives for longer. We are now moving from the era of freehand surgery to the digitalization of surgery, where surgeons are supported by data, genomic analysis and new tools such as robotics.”
Elsewhere in the UK, the nation’s health and social care secretary, Matt Hancock, has pointed out that: “Technology has the potential to revolutionize the NHS [the UK’s National Health Service], by equipping staff with life-saving tools, preventing diseases before they develop and empowering patients to take greater control of their own health. I am determined to nurture a culture of innovation in the NHS to allow cutting-edge technology to flourish and make our health service the very best it can be.”
Advancements in medical operations also have the potential to assist surgeons throughout the US and across the globe, of course, as Stairlift Flint has explored in this article. Keep reading to discover how your experience in an operating theater could be about to change for the better in the months and years ahead…
Genomics is where DNA is used in order to predict the people who are more likely to develop a specific type of illness. One example of this is with liquid DNA analysis, which could see blood tests being used so that patients can get a faster diagnosis and being provided with preventive surgery a lot earlier than they do at the moment. Potentially then, tumors could be removed shortly after they are identified — as opposed to patients needing to have a full organ taken out.
Mr Kerr noted: “Genomics will likely have the biggest impact as our ability to sequence genomes and identify patients carrying genetic mutations or inherited conditions that increase their risk of developing cancer improves. This will likely reduce the number of cases of breast, colorectal and thyroid cancer requiring surgery.”
You should not be surprised to see a surgeon being accompanied by an assistant who is robotic in the near future. After all, robots could make operations quicker, safer and more hygienic due to their pinpoint precision, advanced algorithms and outstanding use of artificial intelligence. Get involved in robotic surgery and surgeons should also be able to successfully complete incredibly complex procedures which would otherwise be extremely difficult or simply impossible to perform.
Even away from the operating table, robots will have their uses. This is because the technology can be used to disinfect hospital rooms and so reduce the risk of hospital-acquired infections developing.
According to industry analyst CCS Insight, the worldwide smart wearable device market is set to grow to a point where it’ll be worth over $27 billion and rake in 233 million unit sales by 2022. It’s not only those looking to get fit who can benefit from this technology though, as evident by developments already seen within this sector.
Take the Apple Series 4 Watch for example. This state-of-the-art device comes complete with an integrated electrocardiogram (ECG) that is designed to monitor the heart rhythms of those wearing it. It’s a feature which customers who have been lucky enough to get their hands on the device have praised as being life-saving technology, as it enables potentially dangerous heart conditions to be identified much more rapidly than usual.
Then there is the case of a pill which was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in November 2017. Once ingested, this pill contains a sensor that transmits a message to a wearable patch. From here, the patch delivers a signal to a smartphone app so that patients are able to keep track of their medication pattern simply by viewing their mobile phone.
As the smart wearable device market continues to grow, many more impressive examples of this technology which will assist those working in the medical industry are sure to be seen.
"Were standing on the verge of transformative changes in surgery"
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