Medical advances we can expect in 2018

Drones to distribute medicine to isolated areas

Due to the rapid improvement in technology, medical services can be reached in remote areas with the help of drones. What was once a dream is now becoming a reality? In 2016, reports were recorded of a start-up company deploying drones to deliver medicine in Rwanda. This method has since become routine and more areas will benefit through this method.

genetic research

Curing diseases through gene editing or CRISPR technology

One of the major medical breakthroughs recorded till date is the technique of editing embryos to avoid any possible genetic disorders. This method holds a lot of potentials as it can provide treatment for many diseases such as retinal degenerative disease and inherited diseases like cystic fibrosis and hemophilia.

ASL patients can communicate using their thoughts

Reports of a new technology which could help decode the views of those with functional brain activity but living in a wholly paralyzed body brought upon by a stroke, traumatic injury or ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis). The research has crossed beginning stages and awaiting trails.

Artificial pancreas for diabetes

In 2017, the first artificial pancreas systems were beginning to infiltrate the market to help people with diabetes regulate and regularize their insulin levels. These artificial pancreas systems will become more prominent in 2018 and further.

Reduction of LDL cholesterol

PCSK9 are powerful cholesterol drugs and are no doubt an enormous breakthrough. The study and findings were reassuring and recorded a 20 percent reduction in LDL from a group of over 20,000 patients.

Enhanced post surgery recovery

New research has been focused on ERAS or Enhanced Recovery After Surgery protocol that accounts for various methods of speeding up recovery after enduring surgery. It includes post-operative nutrition plans and alternative methods of pain medication to speed-up recovery. 2018 will see more hospitals looking at ERAS protocols.

More targeted and precise breast cancer therapies

2018 could see more precise treatments designed to target specific characteristics of cancer cells such as the protein which allows the cells to grow destructively.

Improved treatments for sleep apnoea

The new Remede sleep system is an implanted device that treats the central sleep apnoea by activating a nerve which sends signals to the diaphragm to stimulate proper breathing.

Next generation vaccines

The vaccine manufacturing process has been upgraded in 2018, involving freeze-drying so that vaccines can be safely kept and stored and transported to remote areas more effectively. Reports have been confirmed of companies investigating fast ways to manufacture vaccinations to make them more available.

The first human head transplant

Sergio Canavero is an Italian neurosurgeon set to perform the first human head transplant. This 36-hour lengthy procedure involves the removing the head of the subject and attaching it to a new body with all the nerves and blood vessels reattached along with the spinal cord glued with special bio-compatible glue.

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