Google Glass and Poison Treatment

Dr. Peter Chai, a medical toxicology fellow at UMass Medical School, helps conduct research on the use of Google Glass for remote toxicology consultations.

Credit: UMass Medical School/Bryan Goodchild

With toxin coursing through their veins, patients, who come in for poison treatment, are often in an altered mental state. They cannot tell the physician on duty, who typically is not an expert in poisons, what went wrong. So what happens next?

For most physicians evaluating a potentially poisoned patient, the only solution is a discussion over the phone with a regional poison control center, says Peter Chai, a Fellow in Medical Toxicology at the University of Massachusetts Medical School in Worcester. Almost daily, he says, he and his colleagues are confronted with cases that make them think: “If only we could actually see the patient.”

In the latest edition of the Journal of Medical Toxicology Chai and his colleagues report that Google Glass, the head mounted wearable often referred to simply as Glass, could allow a toxicology specialist to virtually visit the patient’s bedside and help with the diagnosis.

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