“As doctors we see at least one case of Google-itis every day," smiled Doctor Kin Lee. “Patients with Google-itis are those who self-diagnose their symptoms using a Google search and only make a doctor's appointment to confirmation their own diagnosis.”
As much as Google-itis can be frustrating for doctors the race to occupy the medical technology and diagnosis space is on for tech giants like Google.
“Instead of diabetics pricking a finger before each meal or injecting themselves with insulin,” explained Dr Lee, “diabetics could soon be using tiny Google gizmos to manage their disease.”
Well into development is a Google contact lens embedded with a computer chip and glitter-size sensor that measures glucose in tears. It can act as an early warning system, switching on tiny LED lights when blood sugar levels cross a threshold. Google is also working on a disposable, Internet-connected device the size of a Band-Aid that transmits glucose readings to a designated doctor.
“About 400 million people worldwide struggle with diabetes. This number is expected to surge to 592 million by 2035,” said Dr Lee.
Can the technological wizardry used to conquer the Internet be used to the same level of success to tackle global medical epidemics like diabetes?
“Time will tell,” smiled Dr Lee. “But for now doctors have got their hands full dealing with Google-itis.”