Neel V. Patel
July 13, 2016

If you get sick here on Earth, there’s a pretty standard set of things you do to get a diagnosis. You can provide some blood, hop in an fMRI, pee in a cup, or get your throat cultured. Then it’s off to the pharmacy with you for that prescription that will accelerate the recovery process or make the symptoms a little more bearable. This is how the modern world does medicine, but the infrastructure that allows for this order of operations is too vast, unwieldy, and expensive to shoot into outer space. So, if humans are to leave Earth, we must first figure out a way to stay alive and healthy in a new environment. We’ve got our smartest people working on it.

Eric Topol, director of the Scripps Translational Science Institute in La Jolla, California, has some thoughts. Topol, a leading expert on emerging trends in healthcare and medicine, sat down with Ellen Stofan, NASA’s chief scientist, at the International Space Station R&D Conference 2016 this week to provide some insight on what astronauts of the future might be doing to diagnose and treat their own medical problems without a physician close by, and how NASA and other space agencies are investigating and advancing these new technologies and techniques.

Read more here: https://www.inverse.com/article/18198-future-space-medicine-nasa-telemedicine-iss-eric-topol

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