(Forbes) – Medicine and technology tend to go hand in hand. New technology drives innovation, and the work that’s been done over the past couple of years in these fields has been extraordinary. We have started to integrate new technologies, such as virtual reality, augmented reality, artificial intelligence and big data, into the medical sphere, and these recent adoptions are already making positive impacts on people’s lives.
The world of medicine is changing at a rapid pace, which is one of the reasons it’s such an incredible time to be alive. It would probably take an entire afternoon just to scratch the surface of some of the innovations, but I’m excited to share with you a few highlights from the groundbreaking work I’ve seen.
According to the Amputee Coalition, over 2 million people in the United States have lost a limb. Many receive prosthetic limbs, and one of the most exciting innovations is the advent of bionic limbs, which allow certain prosthetic parts to communicate with each other to provide more functionality. As well as enhancing movement, engineers have also been working on an artificial skin to give these limbs a lifelike feeling. This technology could entirely alter the way we think about prosthetics.
2. Mental Health
In a study conducted by the National Alliance on Mental Illness, approximately one in five people has a mental-health problem. Even though these cases can vary in terms of severity, it’s an issue that has plagued society for quite some time. Luckily, there’s new technology designed to combat the scourge of mental illness. From peer-based counseling peer-based to virtual reality firms, the tech world is striving to make mental-health solutions more accessible.
3. Big Data
Big data is a big deal in medicine, not only in its ability to enhance billing and patient communications, but also because of its potential to aid diagnostics. According to a study done by McKinsey, data is currently playing a prominent role in examining the biology of a disease. This industry is already a major player in the medical arena, and is poised to surge.
Image Credit: Sean Gallup/Getty Images