Dr. Alddo Molinar and 3 Tech Advances Poised to Change Medicine
The field of medicine is constantly changing and evolving. How we treat illness and disease today is different than the methods used even ten years ago. This trend will continue into the future but in order to track it, we must analyze the newest innovations of today. To do this, we’ve looked to the work of Dr. Alddo Molinar, a well-respected anesthesiologist. As a proponent of the increased use of technology in medicine, the doctor has a wealth of knowledge about how tech is changing the field. Below, we look to that knowledge as well as other information to better understand the future of medical treatment.
Before diving into the technologies we’ll analyze in this piece, let’s first look to the career of Dr. Alddo Molinar and how he’s made the intentional use of tech a focus of his work. To do this we can look back to his time as a department chair in one of his past working environments. Department chairs are some of the lead physicians in a hospital. Not only do they engage in the day to day work of treating patients, but they also work to help shape hospital policy and treatment methods across the institution. Due to these efforts, these doctors can often be at the forefront of medical advancement and instituting new treatment protocols.
One example of this type of advancement comes from his efforts to integrate the use of electronic medical records into his institution’s workflows. These efforts centered around an increased push to utilize medical records across institutions via data tracking technology. This work helped doctors more easily access patient records and also helped a larger number of those records to stay with patients if they transition from care at one medical facility to another. The end result was increased access to data for doctors which helped inform treatment methods and base outcomes on a greater availability of information.
The entire process helped increase hospital efficiency as well and goes to show the commitment of the doctor to utilizing technological advances to improve care. It’s one of the reasons he makes for a great resource when seeing how other important advances in the field may end up changing the practice of medicine.
One area of technology that’s already making a huge impact in the healthcare field is the creation of artificial intelligence. While the field of AI is still a long way off from the sentient computers you might find in a science fiction film, it has grown precipitously in recent years. Computer scientists have now made sizable advances in this work, especially in a subset of the field known as machine learning. In machine learning applications, computers can use their access to large data sets to iteratively come up with more effective ways of completing a task. As access to data grows, these applications can come up with better and better solutions to solve increasingly more complex problems.
One example of the usage of machine learning AI in the medical field comes to us from the area of anesthesiology. Here’s a description by Dr. Alddo Molinar which details some of the work conducted by physicians in this field during a typical surgical operation:
“Among other things, we are critical to making sure your brain continues to receive oxygen, your kidneys continue to purify your blood, and you wake up in the least amount of pain possible,” says the doctor.
This quote points to the work these doctors do to monitor a patient’s vital signs. This can entail monitoring a large number of vital signs simultaneously on many different instruments. Machine learning applications are helping to streamline this process by condensing the monitoring to a single piece of dashboard software. AI can then use vital sign data to make treatment suggestions to doctors. Though it is still up to the doctor to make a decision, the AI algorithms can be an important tool at their disposal.
Virtual reality is another hotly followed piece of technology that is touching many different areas of society. It’s popularly used in video game applications and is increasingly allowing people to experience situations that they might not otherwise be able to engage in. This can include attending concerts, traveling to remote locations, and much more.
In a medical application, one of the uses of virtual reality is for training doctors on how to deal with real-world situations. By engaging in training programs in a virtual reality environment, doctors can increase their experience in a safe manner. It can also help to train doctors on situations that are relatively rare in normal practice.
Wearables and other sensors
The collection of health data has long been an important part of the medical field. The greater a doctor’s access to data, the better equipped they are to make an informed decision about medical treatment. We touched on this above through the work by the anesthesiologist to improve access to electronic medical records.
However, medical records are not very useful if there’s no data to put in them in the first place. Traditionally, medical data has come from centralized testing procedures such as MRIs or X-rays. However, new advancements in wearable monitoring devices are allowing doctors a greater degree of flexibility when it comes to how patients are able to provide their medical data. Wearables are allowing patients to collect data throughout a normal day, rather than needing to go to a centralized testing facility. These devices are also able to improve access to data that is more useful over long spans of time, such as heart rate data and certain types of brain scans.
While it’s difficult to predict the trajectory of medicine, even in the immediate future, we can make informed guesses based on the state of modern technology. As we’ve seen above, three key areas of technology — artificial intelligence, virtual reality, and wearable data collection — are primed to have a significant impact on how medicine is practiced. These areas of exploration can be even more powerful when coupled with the work of medical professionals such as Dr. Alddo Molinar, who are proponents of the increased use of technology. Consider exploring these fields in greater detail for a better idea of how medicine may change moving forward.