At their age, baby boomers are usually skeptical about technology and more likely to fall ill due to one ailment or another. This generation of people prefers what they understand, and the idea that technology can now take a bigger role in medicine may not be very appealing.
In the UK, a little over 50% of cancer patients are aged between the ages of 50 and 70. Also, it is a known fact that as you get older, the risk of contracting high blood pressure increases. With technology, however, treating some ailments and screening others has been made easier, hence aiding in the increase of baby boomers. The next text will explain how.
The main weakness that was initially experienced during surgery was the fact that it was too invasive and sometimes ended up harming nerves or organs that could have been avoided in the first place. Secondly, due to the trauma that the patient's body experienced during surgery, the recovery time was longer.
Technology in the theater is now attempting to mitigate these weaknesses through:
The use of robots. As surgeons may not be able to reach some depths within the patient's body, a robot's slim hands are used to get to the affected area. The surgeon then directs these hands to do what he would do but in a more efficient way. An even greater advancement is telesurgery, where the surgeon operates from a remote location.
Nanobots are also being experimented with for use in surgeries, though this technology is still under research.
Another advance is the use of a different opening to enter a patient's body safely. An example is the removal of brain tumors through the nose.
Digital Imaging and Storage
An example of this is the Picture Archiving and Communication Systems. With systems such as PACS, a medical facility enjoys benefits such as:
The presence of imaging systems that can take x-ray images, CATS scans, and MRIs on a patient
A secure digital platform through which a patient's information and history can be exchanged
Providing a secure database on which these images and patients' details can be stored
Controlling cancer in patients involves early detection and less invasive diagnosis and treatment approaches. Most of the methods used to diagnose cancer are painful and cause physical harm to the patient, an example being a biopsy. The advances that have been made in relation to cancer treatment include:
MelaFind: Biopsy is the main method through which melanoma can be detected. At times, it reveals cancer and in some cases, the patient goes through the pain but the melanoma is not detected. MelaFind helps doctors get a more accurate and conduct less invasive diagnosis of cancer.
The Gamma Knife: This is a radiosurgery that treats brain tumors and growths by concentrating around 200 beams of the radiation to the affected part with an accuracy of less than a millimeter. Any surrounding tissue is, therefore, unaffected.
Digital Tomosynthesis: This procedure is mostly used to detect breast cancer, and it works by providing a 3D image of the tissue, hence giving a more accurate scan.
3D Printed Organs
All over the world, the number of persons in need of body organs exceeds that of donors. To increase the supply of organs, the following advances have been observed:
3D printing of organs is a technique that is in progress and is yet to be confirmed as practical. This process involves the printing organic matter using a living tissue. It is a complicated process since you have to manipulate the exact workings of the organ in a lab and tissues like the heart might take a bit longer due to their complexity.
The use of chips in place of organs is also being researched on. This is fairly new and is yet to be tried out on humans. However, it has the advantage of being tested without the need for human subjects.
It might take a while before baby boomers are comfortable with the idea, but clearly, technology has made some major strides in the field of medicine. In a few years, research may result in other new discoveries.