Hot Health Technology Trends
We have undergone many revolutions in our world. One of the most life altering was the Industrial Revolution, giving us the iron and textile industries, the development of the steam engine, improved systems of transportation, manufacturing, communication and banking. We really were cooking with fire—for a while. That flame has been reignited with the most recent technological revolution. Technology has woven itself into the very fabric of our modern existence. This issue discusses a few leading technologies available right here in our region that are designed to help you feel more confident, safe, healthy, and happy.
Mama Always Said, Spokane’s a Smart City
You might have heard news here and there about the University District’s involvement in Spokane’s Smart City initiative. Since 2014, a handful of companies and organizations, all leaders in their respective fields with a vested interest in Spokane’s success, have been working together to establish the vision and planning for an initiative known as Spokane’s University District Smart City Accelerator. The group includes Avista Utilities, Itron, the City of Spokane, Washington State University, McKinstry and the University District Development Association. The members of this pioneering group have been mentored by some of the world’s leading providers of information, data and communications technologies as well as the Smart Cities Council, a global coalition headquartered in Redmond dedicated to educating and supporting cities in creating smart, sustainable technologies with high-quality living and high-quality jobs.
The mentorship of this group really took hold when last December, Envision America—a White House initiative—announced it had selected 10 U.S. cities to participate in its program in 2016. Spokane’s Smart City Accelerator is based in the University District’s 770-acre footprint and emphasizes the critical interactions between energy, water, health, food and the built environment. Spokane’s vision leverages planned technology infrastructure additions, the campuses’ existing health sciences focus and the region’s health care concentration to establish a manageable, community-scale living laboratory that will enhance resident well-being and stimulate development. The technical assistance provided by the Envision America selection will accelerate Spokane’s effort from planning to implementation during the coming year. Keep your ear to the ground for regular updates.
See You Later, Double Chin
Sarah Hamilton, RN and certified integrated wellness nutritionist, owns Sarah Hamilton FACE in Liberty Lake. She shared the following with us about Kybella, the hottest new product in the non-surgical cosmetic field today.
Some hail it as the biggest innovation since Botox. This injectable product can literally dissolve a double chin that can make you look older or heavier no matter what your age or weight is. In many cases, this fat doesn’t typically respond to diet and exercise. Kybella has revolutionized the world of non-surgical cosmetic procedures. One of its selling points is that Kybella is made with naturally occurring molecules, Deoxycholic acid. When injected into the submental (chin) fat, it permanently dissolves or kills the fat cells. Your body then removes the fat through its typical excretion process.
When injected properly, it only dissolves fat cells and leaves other cells intact. Kybella is FDA approved to treat under the chin fat and is not yet approved for other areas, but rest assured, there are clinical trials going on now for belly fat. Typically, patients need one to three treatments, eight weeks apart with minimal recovery time.
Kybella has one of the highest patient satisfaction rates, 80 percent of the 2,600 patients in the clinical trials were satisfied. It’s now possible to say goodbye to scarves, turtlenecks, and liposuction without having the incision scars or surgical downtime.
Girl Parts Rejoice
Sarah Hammil, MD, FACOG, FPMRS of Northwest OBGYN is excited to introduce you to MonaLisa Touch.
It has been estimated that 20 to 45 percent of women experience significant vaginal discomfort related to menopause, but only a small number seek help from their doctors. MonaLisa Touch is an innovative treatment approved by the FDA in August 2014 to treat these common vaginal symptoms without surgery or hormone therapy.
MonaLisa Touch is designed to treat vaginal atrophy, a condition often associated with menopause in which the walls of the vagina become thin and dry, making sexual intercourse painful and interfering with a woman’s quality of life. MonaLisa Touch uses a small laser that revitalizes the cells in the vaginal tissue so that these cells make more collagen, an essential factor in vaginal health and function. Patients receive three treatments, spaced six weeks apart. Each treatment takes less than five minutes to perform and anesthesia is not required.
In the past, treatment included hormone therapies that work by increasing estrogen levels in a woman’s body. MonaLisa Touch is an excellent treatment option for women who are not able to utilize therapies that increase estrogen levels because of a history of cancer.
In Like Flynn with Facial Skin
There are several new technologies in the field of dermatology. Three of the most exciting are detailed here by Dr. Cameron Chestnut of Dermatology Specialists of Spokane.
Transconjunctival Lower Blepharoplasty
Lower eyelid blepharoplasty is a minimally invasive surgical approach to treat excess skin and fat that can create lower eyelid bags. It used to be that surgeons would cut through the skin and muscle underneath the eyelashes to perform this procedure, but some patients would have muscular dysfunction and malposition of the lower eyelid afterward. This minimally invasive procedure can comfortably be performed with local anesthesia, as well.
Fractional Laser Resurfacing
Approaches to laser resurfacing in the latter part of the 20th century would treat the entire surface of the skin, very similar to a chemical peel, giving beautiful results, but coming with a lot of downtime and risk. Now, the delivery of energy with the lasers has become fractionated (pixelated), which treats only selected microscopic zones of skin leaving the neighboring tissue intact. This allows for deeper, more aggressive treatment of the area selected simultaneously decreasing the downtime and risk by leaving neighboring normal skin intact.
Sculptra is a volumizer, or filler, that has a unique mechanism that creates collagen production in soft tissues. This means when it’s injected it actually stimulates one’s own skin and underlying fat pads to “fill” themselves. Other fillers on the market use the actual product itself to volumize the area. Sculptra provides long-term, natural and subtle pan-facial volumization.
Move That Body
Robert Hoctor, OTR/L, ATP, CEES, CWcHP, at Summit Rehabilitation Associates offers insight about a dilemma many office workers are faced with.
Sometimes, going high-tech, means going low-tech. There is no question that many of us are slowly killing ourselves by moving less, eating too much and not engaging in physical activity. Most people spend more time sitting than they do lying down to sleep at night. Research has suggested that “Sitting is Killing You” and “Sitting is the New Smoking,” indicating that the sedentary lifestyle that many people live is resulting in significant health risks.
In response to these studies, the popularity of sit-stand workstations has increased significantly. The Internet is full of options for add-on sit-stand equipment and higher end electric height adjustable desks.
But hold on a minute. Before you join the craze and get a sit-stand workstation, there are several things to consider.
Cost: $400 to $1500
Developing Other Problems:
Many find out their pain actually increases with standing in one place for extended periods of time while others develop new areas of pain due to a new posture.
Will you actually use it?
Sitting or standing, both positions are static over long periods of time.
Before you invest in a sit-stand workstation, realize the issue is not about sitting or standing, but is more about movement. Try these things first.
Make sure that your chair and workstation have been adjusted for neutral ergonomic positioning.
Move frequently throughout your day.
Take a short walk to the copier or go fill your water bottle.
Have a walking meeting.
Stand up and move every 45-60 minutes. Use a timer, Outlook Calendar or Stand Up App.
Walk and move during breaks and lunch.
Set up an area in your workplace to perform non-computer related tasks while standing.
Your New Breast Friend
Inland Imaging’s Ed Renouard shares with us the benefits of 3D mammography.
Breast tomosynthesis, or 3D mammography, represents a significant breakthrough in breast imaging technology, a screening and diagnostic tool designed for early breast cancer detection. A 2D image is also generated from the 3D data set.
Tomosynthesis produces a three-dimensional picture of the breast that a radiologist can view in 1-millimeter slices, making it possible to visualize breast tissue at a level of detail never before possible. The multiple 3D images provide the radiologists much more information with which to evaluate a patient’s breast health, while also reducing the need for follow-up imaging.
Everyone who is a candidate for 2D mammography is also a candidate for tomosynthesis. Patients with dense breast tissue may benefit most, but every woman’s breast health is better evaluated with 3D mammography. We suggest that women 40 years of age and older receive an annual screening mammogram.
Robin Bishop is a free-lance writer and editor of Catalyst magazine. She can be contacted at [email protected] or via facebook at Dragonfly Writer/Robin Bishop.
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