AnatOnMe: Microsoft device improves doctor patient communication

Microsoft announced this week that they have developed a new handheld device that should allow better communication between doctors and patients.

According to PhysOrg, their new prototype device is called AnatOnMe and it lets doctors project an image of the bones, tendons and muscles involved in an injury directly onto the patient’s skin.  

AnatOnMe has two parts. The main component possesses a handheld projector, a digital camera, and an infrared camera. The secondary piece of the device houses a laser pointer and the main control buttons. Amy Karlson from Microsoft Research’s Computational User Experiences Group located in Redmond, Washington claims that the technology is actually low-tech but could provide many possibilities in the future.

The projector is able to project stock images (clip art library?) of an injury onto a patient’s skin to let them to see inside and understand the injury they dealing with. The camera gives doctors the ability to take images of a patient to record progress and make notations.

They also have the ability to take photos of a patient doing physical therapy and comment on what they might be doing wrong or what they need to work on. This system lets the patient see how their body is working and what needs to be done in order to heal from the injury. It’s like a totally bionic healing system from science fiction fantasy.

When the exam is finished, the doctor is then able to print out the pictures and make a personalized file to show what has been talked about in the office visit for the patient to bring home, as well as give thorough information in a patient’s medical record.  

By personalizing the visit and instructions, the hope is that it will improve patient body awareness and communication between the doctor and the patient.

Let’s just be thankful that the dreaded reanimation of Clippy has nothing to do with Microsoft’s medical system…yet.