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Meds out of sci-fi

An implant to cure migraine, a hand-held scanner to detect skin cancer, 3-D scan to detect breast cancer early, Rhythma Kaul writes.

health and fitness Updated: Jan 01, 2013 00:25 IST
Rhythma Kaul

For many years now, doctors have observed that people undergoing bariatric or weight-loss surgery were cured of type-2 diabetes, the most common form of the disease.

Therefore, it isn’t surprising that the Cleveland Clinic in the United States has announced that it expects good old bariatric surgery to be the most sought-after medical procedure in 2013.

While the discovery of the connection between cutting fat and getting rid of type-2 diabetes was serendipitous, the clinic has also picked inventions that seem to have been inspired by a mash-up of science fiction and toy-geekiness.

Take the almond-sized device that not only relieves headaches but also banishes stubborn migraines. All a doctor has to do is surgically implant it in the upper gum above the second molar.

Then there is the hand-held scanner which looks like a blow dryer but is used to detect skin cancer. New 3-D scan technology, which can detect lumps in their infancy, is also being developed to scan for breast cancer.

All this could be on the agenda at the 14th World Congress on Medical and Health Informatics, to be held in Copenhagen, Denmark.

The event will look at how technologies facilitate cooperation across borders. The future is all about the convergence of health, medicine and bio informatics.