Most of us will remember the tricorder, in the fictional Star Trek universe, as that multifunction hand-held device used for sensor scanning, data analysis, and recording data. Three variants existed, one of which is the medical tricorder which was used by doctors to help diagnose diseases and collect bodily information about a patient.
It will not be long before the medical tricorder is available for each one of us to have at home. Last week, at the Nokia Sensing xChallenge awards, saw us inch ever closer to owning one!
It’s called rHEALTH, and it’s so highly sophisticated, it can diagnose hundreds of diseases with just a drop of blood.
Instead of taking vials of blood as with a conventional blood test, rHEALTH only needs one drop. The blood goes into a receptacle where nano-strips react to it. This mixture goes into a spiral mixture that prepares it for laser analysis. After a few minutes, users will be told if they’ve got the flu, pneumonia or something more serious. Currently, rHEALTH can count cells, detect HIV, determine vitamin D levels and assess various protein markers, which allows it to spot certain ailments.
Nothing like this has existed in the consumer space before. Unlike health tools like Apple Health, rHEALTH focuses on diagnostics rather than simply monitoring caloric intake and collecting personal data.
rHealth is still several years from a shop shelf, but other simpler tricorders will be available very soon. Scanadu will soon be launching the Scanadu Scout which is the size of an ice hockey puck and is capable of measuring your heart rate, blood pressure, body temperature, stress and others vitals. It all started with a highly successful crowdfunding Indiegogo campaign.
rHEALTH’s potential release could reshape medical diagnostics and personal health. Being able to diagnose hundreds of diseases and vitamin deficiencies with a household device is an obvious boon to health care, and the availability of health data beyond the numbers on a scale could present an empowering tool for people looking to manage their own health and fitness.
As Vinod Koshla, an outspoken investor in new healthcare technologies, stated a few years ago, 80% of what our doctors currently do will eventually be done by technology!
Technology and medical science advances are disrupting healthcare as we know it. Our book called iDisrupted, gives greater insight into the breadth and depth of technology disruption in healthcare and other aspects of our lives. iDisrupted is available on Amazon now.
Julien de SalaberryrHealth X Prize