Medical device innovations: From Sci-Fi movies to the real world

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Toya T Peterson speaks on medical devices from the Sci-Fi world that could one day become reality. The handheld medical device used in the popular Star Trek Enterprise might soon become a reality. With Qualcomm having began a contest to see if anyone can create a working tricorder (that weighs less than 5 pounds and fits in the palm!), the healthcare industry might be able to benefit from this great innovation. With the ability to diagnose different conditions (ranging from anemia, diabetes, pneumonia, sleep apnea, and chronic diseases amongst others) and monitor vital signs (like blood pressure, heart rate, temperature and respiratory rate) of patients, the tricorder can be used by patients in the comforts of their homes, without having to visit the doctor. While Ender's Game featured a surgical robot performing brain surgery, robotic medical assistants majorly enable safe patient lifting, reducing incidents of workplace injuries, and hence improved clinician staff retention and satisfaction as well as patient satisfaction.