September 21, 2023
House expertise brings medical advantages to earth: Mississauga physician

By Karen Longwell

Revealed December 12, 2022 at 12:05 pm

House expertise brings medical advantages to earth: Mississauga physician

The Bio-Analyzer on the Worldwide House Station. The Canadian expertise was turned on on-orbit for the primary time by Canadian House Company astronaut David Saint-Jacques in Might 2019. Picture by Canadian House Company/NASA

From the infrared thermometer to GPS — units made for house profit individuals on earth as properly, a Mississauga physician examines in a brand new analysis paper.

Dr. Farhan Asrar, a Mississauga-based household physician and assistant professor with College of Toronto, Dalla Lana College of Public Well being and Trillium Well being Companions, is the lead creator of a paper revealed in Canadian Household Doctor, the official journal of the Faculty of Household Physicians of Canada.

Asrar, who can be a world school member on the Worldwide House College, has lengthy had an curiosity in how house expertise can profit medical observe at residence. Final 12 months, he was additionally the lead creator on an analogous paper, revealed in Nature Drugs, on how house companies present look after astronauts in orbit might be utilized to pandemics similar to COVID-19.

This new paper, titled Outer house property provide advantages to well being care, appears on the extra normal facets of the position house innovations play in well being.

“There are such a lot of (innovations) that we’ve really even type of included in our each day life that we’re not even conscious of,” Asrar tells

Often called “spin-offs” many technological units had been initially invented for house however had been later discovered to have advantages on earth.

One of the crucial widespread examples is the infrared thermometer. This expertise was initially invented to measure the temperature of distant celestial objects. However now infrared thermometers are used in every single place, notably through the pandemic, to test if an individual has a fever whereas not getting too shut.

There are different units that would make a giant distinction to individuals in remoted areas.

“If we take a look at Canada’s north the place entry to medical personnel or machines, different modalities and even specialists is proscribed, so it could actually take a look at the distant medication that house has been utilizing offering well being care from a distance,” Asrar says.

The bio-analyzer, which the Canadian House Company has been engaged on, is an instance. The machine is the dimensions of a online game console and may check totally different physique fluids similar to blood, saliva, and urine.

Beforehand, samples from astronauts in house must be despatched right down to earth for evaluation.

These units may be utilized in pure disasters  — the aid group would possibly have to take one thing that’s moveable to assist individuals who want care.

“These units might be fairly useful in these situations as properly.”

There’s additionally the bio-monitor, a “sensible shirt” designed for astronauts to watch and document very important indicators.

space doctor mississauga

The Canadian astronaut Dr. David Saint-Jacques and Mississauga public well being and household doctor Dr. Fahran Asrar. (Equipped picture)

The paper additionally contains feedback from Canadian doctor astronauts on their experiences.

4 Canadian physicians have turn out to be astronauts — household docs Dave Williams, Robert Thirsk, and David Saint-Jacques. The fourth doctor—Canada’s first feminine astronaut and the world’s first neurologist in house—is Dr Roberta Bondar.

Williams mirrored on his expertise and the way it impacted his broader world view.

“Viewing Earth from house, there are not any seen borders separating international locations, and it’s clear that what occurs in a single a part of the world impacts our whole planet,” Williams writes within the paper.

Saint-Jacques says he was practising normal medication in remoted Inuit communities in northern Canada when he was recruited into the Canadian House Company’s astronaut program.

He discovered there are “hanging parallels between the challenges and constraints of rural medical observe and medical look after on-orbit astronauts: isolation, self-reliance, restricted gear, and impractical or unattainable medical evacuation.”

“Related issues typically have related options; that’s why medical expertise developed for house crews is normally related to medication on Earth. And vice versa,” Saint-Jacques says within the paper.

Asrar hopes this paper will assist create consciousness for most of the people and healthcare professionals in regards to the position the house world has on medication.

Whereas Asrar is glad and and content material along with his work from home, he wouldn’t say no to a visit to house.

“I wouldn’t say no to it,” he says. “Why not? I’d at all times hold that door open.”

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