Tuesday, December 8, 2009

3 Things Patients Need to Know About Medical Technology


This is a guest post by Shannon Wills. If you're interested in submitting a guest post, please contact me.

3 Things Patients Need to Know About Medical Technology

There’s no doubting the fact that technology has made our lives so much easier; it is advancing my leaps and bounds and is becoming more useful by the day, especially in the field of medicine where it has diagnostic and life-saving uses. There are breakthroughs and innovations taking place every day and we are benefiting immensely through medical technology. But as a patient, if you want to really optimize your use of technology in this field, here are a few things you need to first know:
Is it right for you? It may be innovative and path-breaking, but is the technology right for your condition? Doctors may suggest that it is available and that you could try it, but it’s up to you to decide whether to make use of it or not. For example, if you’re young and lead an active life that involves playing sports and exercising regularly, you’re definitely going to want to undergo a reconstruction surgery for your torn ACL (anterior cruciate ligament). But if you’re past the age of 60 and tend to lead a sedentary life, why waste your money and time on a surgery that is going to be painful and that requires a long period of rehabilitation? The ACL is responsible for balance during quick movements, and even if it is torn, you could get around comfortably without a problem with just some simple exercises if you don’t lead a very active lifestyle. So before you take advantage of technology, know if you really need it.
Has it been tested adequately? Some advancements made in the field of medicine are as yet untested and still in the experimental stage. But because we are eager to find a cure for the illness that affects us, we fail to take into consideration the side effects and adverse consequences of experimental surgeries and other forms of technology in medicine. Some people have nothing to lose by trying new technology because they suffer from terminal illnesses or conditions. But there are others who try out new technology for trivial conditions that really don’t technology (like cosmetic surgery) and end up having to live with the consequences for the rest of their lives.
Is it being harnessed by the right people? In some cases, the technology may be proven, but when the people who use it are not skilled or competent, it is equivalent to being worthless. So before you go in for a complicated treatment or surgery, ensure that you choose the right healthcare team and avoid unnecessary complications and preventable medical errors.
When it comes to medicine and technology, it’s best to do your research and get a second opinion before jumping into any form of treatment without a second thought. After all, it’s your health and life at stake.

This post is contributed by Shannon Wills, who writes on the topic of x ray tech schools . She welcomes you comments at her email id: shannonwills23@gmail.com

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