I recently came across the following summary of “predicted medical innovations for 2015”. An edited version follows…

At the Cleveland Clinic’s annual Medical Innovation Summit, the top 10 list included a high-tech stroke ambulance, painless blood testing, new cancer therapies and a vaccine that could help 50 million to 100 million people in more than 100 countries.

— Stroke Ambulance
Time lost is brain lost, so starting treatment while patients with stroke symptoms are being transported to the hospital is crucial. This specialized ambulance uses telemedicine to allow in-hospital neurologists to diagnose symptoms via a broadband video link. The onboard paramedic, critical-care nurse and CT technologist then perform a neurological evaluation and administer the stroke drug t-Pa, if needed, providing faster, effective treatment for the patient.

— Dengue Fever Vaccine
Mosquitoes infect 50 million to 100 million people in more than 100 countries with the painful, debilitating dengue virus each year. The world’s first vaccine for this has been developed and tested, and is expected to be submitted to regulatory groups in 2015, with commercialization expected later in the year.

— Painless, Inexpensive Blood Test
With a painless prick of the finger, labs will be able to quickly test a drop of blood within hours at a fraction of the cost of traditional lab testing, which now requires a vial of blood and takes days for results. This new technique could also cost as little as 10% of the traditional Medicare reimbursement.

— New Cholesterol-Reducing Drugs
Statins have been used to reduce cholesterol in heart disease patients for more than two decades, but some people can’t tolerate them or don’t benefit from them. Several injectable cholesterol-lowering drugs (called PCSK9 inhibitors) are in development for those who don’t benefit from statins. The FDA is expected to approve in 2015 for its ability to significantly lower LDL cholesterol.

— Antibody-Drug Conjugates
By combining three components, this promising new targeted approach for treating advanced cancer specifically attacks tumor cells while avoiding normal, healthy tissue. It allows antibodies to work against the tumor.

We will follow-up with Part II in next week’s post…

– John D. Miller is the founder/owner of Home Care Partners, LLC, a Massachusetts business providing private duty, personalized in-home assistance and companion care services to those needing help in daily activities and household functions. He can be reached at: (781) 378-2164; email: jdmiller@homecarepartners.biz ; or online at: www.homecarepartnersma.com