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Moving Online for Diagnosis


According to a 2003 Journal of the American Medical Association review of autopsy studies, doctors misdiagnose 8% to 24% of the time. Cognitive errors, such as latching onto a diagnosis that seems the most likely without considering other possibilities — which experts call “anchoring” — are among many root causes, according to Jerome Groopman, chairman of experimental medicine at Harvard University and author of the book How Doctors Think.

In order to reduce medical related errors,doctors now use various technological tools of web.A British Medical Journal study last year reported that Doctors “Google for diagnosis” (2006;333: 1143-1145) in the article “How good is Google in helping doctors to reach the correct diagnosis?”

Now they can use a web tool named ISABEL,

What is Isabel, it is a Web-based medical technology that generates a list of possible diagnoses based on the patients’ symptoms.

The cost for using this system for a 300 bed hospital is $50,000

The other tools which helps a physician in diagnosis are:

VisualDxHealth is created by doctors and health care professionals. Many sites have information about diseases – We deliver medical pictures and self-care information about diseases so that you understand the disease and can make decisions.
VisualDx contains nearly 10,000 medical photographs culled from 1.2 million accumulated since the 1940s in private archives and colleges, chiefly New York University and the University of California at Los Angeles.

Priced anywhere from $200 to $20,000 annually, depending on the number of users.

This is primarily focused on Dermatological conditions.

The other websites which help in Personalized search for diagnosis are Medgle;

This website claims to have around 6000 symptoms and more than 2000 diagnoses visually created by physicians.

The service is offered for free.

Although these tools are primarily aimed at physicians,yet health conscious consumer “Healthsumer” may use these tools to self-diagnose any of their related medical disease.As we move more onto the web based environment for disease management,some of the physicians are adopting “Medicine 2.0″technologies.

Prominent among them is Dr Jay Parkinson who is using Web 2.0 technologies like:AIM,Gtalk,Yahoo,MSN

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{ 2 comments… add one }

  • Walt March 17, 2008, 2:33 am

    This is worth a look because it focuses less on diagnosis and more on symptom triage. The idea is to help people decide when their symptoms may be indicative of a serious illness (or not) and what to do about it (i.e. when and where to be seen—ER vs UC vs office).

    Anyone else seen anything like this with this level of detail?

  • Oscar Carson December 6, 2010, 2:12 am

    Wow that’s a totally smart post, thank-you.

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