Diagnostic Directions - Wireless Body Area Network is revolutionizing personalized health care delivery worldwide

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Diagnostic Directions - Wireless Body Area Network is revolutionizing personalized health care delivery worldwide

December 02, 2015
From the November 2015 issue of HealthCare Business News magazine
 
NASA is developing a wearable physiological monitoring system for astronauts called the Life- Guard system. IEEE aims to provide low power in-body and on-body wireless communication standards for medical applications.
 
Applications
WBANs have great potential for several applications in remote medical diagnosis. Inbody applications include monitoring and program changes for pacemakers and implantable cardiac defibrillators, control of bladder function and restoration of limb movement. On-body medical applications include monitoring heart rate, blood pressure, temperature and respiration.

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These cover various medical areas including:
 
Cardiovascular Diseases: WBAN is a key technology to prevent the occurrence of myocardial infarction, it monitors episodic events or any other abnormal condition and can be used for ambulatory health monitoring.
 
Cancer Detection: Cancer remains one of the biggest threats to human life. The population diagnosed with cancer is increasing every year. A set of miniaturized sensors capable of monitoring cancer cells can be seamlessly integrated in WBAN. This allows physicians to diagnose tumors without a biopsy.
 
Asthma: WBAN can help millions of patients suffering from asthma by monitoring allergenic agents in the air and by providing real-time feedback to the physician. There are GPS-based devices that monitor environmental factors and trigger an alarm in cases where allergens harmful to the patient are present.
 
Artificial Retina: Retina prosthesis chips can be implanted in the human eye, enabling patients with limited or no vision to see at an adequate level. Existing telemedicine systems use either dedicated wireless channels to transfer information to the remote stations, or power demanding protocols such as Bluetooth, that are open to interference by other devices working in the same frequency band. These characteristics limit prolonged health monitoring. A WBAN can be integrated into a telemedicine system to drive unobtrusive ambulatory health monitoring for a long period of time.
 
About the author: Bipin Thomas is a renowned global thought-leader on consumer-centric health care transformation.

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