medical

Verily Study Watch irregular heartbeat detection clears FDA

Verily Study Watch irregular heartbeat detection clears FDA

Detecting irregular heartbeats, a.k.a. atrial fibrillation or AFib, has become a hot thing in the wearable tech market thanks to the Apple Watch. Now almost everyone wants to have that feature, too, including Withings and Suunto. It might only take a matter of time for Google, who recently purchased Fitbit, to follow suit but, for now, its Alphabet sibling Verily has gotten a head start now that its Study Watch has gotten the FDA clearance for its Irregular Pulse Monitor for detecting AFib.

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Surgeon General tells Americans to stop smoking cigarettes in new report

Surgeon General tells Americans to stop smoking cigarettes in new report

Today US Surgeon General Vice Admiral Jerome M. Adams released the first major report on smoking cessation in 30 years. The first (of two, total) made by the office was released three decades ago. Here in 2020, Adams said, "Today, I'm calling on healthcare professionals, health systems, employers, insurers, public health professionals, and policy makers to take action to put an end to the staggering—and completely preventable—human and financial tolls that smoking takes on our country."

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1989 Damien Hirst USD$1k medicine cabinet could sell for millions in 2020

1989 Damien Hirst USD$1k medicine cabinet could sell for millions in 2020

This January of 2020 an auction is set to take place with a set of artworks from several artists, one of whom is Damien Hirst. Of interest in this auction is a relatively old Damien Hirst artwork by the name of "Bodies", originally sold in the year 1989. The artwork is one of the first 4 medicine cabinets that'd eventually make a suite of 12, and it was purchased for a sum of £600
- converting that amount in 1989 to dollars hits around USD$1k.

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Phonak Virto Black hearing aids look like regular wireless earbuds

Phonak Virto Black hearing aids look like regular wireless earbuds

It is always good to hear, no pun intended, when trends, technologies, and designs from the mobile market seep into other industries to help make products become more approachable or even desirable and vice versa. Such an exchange of gifts is perhaps most visible in the audio market where Bluetooth earphones and hearings aids inform each other's development from time to time. The most recent example of this is Phonak's Virto Black, a hearing aid that further blurs the lines by adopting a form that is quite common if not already fashionable among mobile users today.

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Withings ScanWatch detects irregular heart rate and sleep apnea

Withings ScanWatch detects irregular heart rate and sleep apnea

The Apple Watch's atrial fibrillation or AFib detection definitely struck a chord in the wearables market, even if it is now the center of a patent lawsuit. Apple is naturally proud of how the feature, based on numerous testimonies, has been able to save lives. It is a matter of time before other smart wearable manufacturers catch up with it and it seems that Withings is one of the first to reach that point with its new ScanWatch hybrid smartwatch. More than just AFib detection, however, it is bringing another health feature to your wrist.

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Google AI detects breast cancer better than humans, not the end for doctors

Google AI detects breast cancer better than humans, not the end for doctors

You often hear about (somewhat exaggerated) articles about how bots and especially AI will be replacing human workers in the not so distant future. That is a possibility but one that is still far from becoming reality, especially when life-critical decisions have to be made. Still, it's quite impressive how far AI has come, especially when it manages to outdo professionals in accuracy, like when detecting breast cancer.

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Leaked Pentagon memo warns military about the risk of DNA kits

Leaked Pentagon memo warns military about the risk of DNA kits

A leaked Department of Defense memo, which has since been confirmed as authentic by the Pentagon, warns the military about the potential risks of direct-to-consumer DNA testing kits. These services have become very popular among the public, offering insight into one's genes related to ancestry and health, among other things. These same tests could be a major risk for some people, however, putting their livelihoods (and lives) at stake.

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FDA approves new drug that immediately treats migraines

FDA approves new drug that immediately treats migraines

Migraines, a particularly severe type of headache that can cause pain and visual disturbances, often last for hours or days, disrupting one's life. Pain killers and other acute treatments often fail to provide relief from these migraines; instead, most treatments are for preventing chronic migraines. That has changed with the FDA's approval of a new drug that offers immediate, rather than preventative, relief.

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5G Matters: It’s more than just about streaming and mobile

5G Matters: It’s more than just about streaming and mobile

Since the end of 2018, network operators, silicon makers, and smartphone manufacturers have all been rallying around 5G, the next-generation wireless technology that is promised to revolutionize the world. Much of the rhetoric around it focused on faster speeds, lower latencies, and support for dozens if not hundreds of devices. Many of the examples carriers use to talk about how downloading an HD video file would take only seconds, something most consumers would be able to relate to immediately. While it does make 5G more understandable, it also boxes people's minds around the concept of 5G as "just faster 4G", and that undersells the new experiences that 5G will enable in the near future and beyond.

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FDA’s nerve pill breathing issue warning is only for certain patients

FDA’s nerve pill breathing issue warning is only for certain patients

The FDA is warning that two popular medications commonly prescribed to treat nerve pain, epilepsy, and select other issues can cause 'serious' breathing problems in some of the patients who take them. This warning raised concerns among the many people taking these pills, but a careful look at the FDA's advisory shows that the issue only applies to certain patients.

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FDA approves first US Ebola vaccine: What you should know

FDA approves first US Ebola vaccine: What you should know

The United States Food and Drug Administration has approved of an Ebola vaccine for the first time in history. This announcement was made just weeks after a similar approval by the World Health Organization. The vaccine goes by the name of Ervebo, and it's already been "assessed in approximately 15,000 individuals in Africa, Europe and North America." This vaccine's approval process, though rigorous, was done in relatively short order thanks to the efforts of the FDA and associated medical and scientific groups due to the urgent need for this vaccine as outbreaks continue to occur.

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Study shows vaping + smoking is riskier than e-smoking alone

Study shows vaping + smoking is riskier than e-smoking alone

A study from the University of California showed that splitting one's tobacco use between e-cigarettes and traditional cigarettes is more dangerous to one's health than full-time vaping. The obvious least-risky choice here is avoiding tobacco outright, but the study centers on respiratory disease amongst tobacco users specifically. The continued use of traditional combustable tobacco appears to be just as risky to one's health as smoking traditional cigarettes 100% of the time.

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