Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Printing Human Organs is for Real.

At the Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine they engineer tissues and organs in a lab. It’s still experimental. However, an amazing thing is that one of their methods is to use a printer to create human organs. Instead of using ink, the printers use human cells. Wouldn’t it be amazing if people no longer needed to wait on a donor list for a liver, kidney or a heart? I would think creating skin with this technology is probably close to being ready. However, I can only imagine the cost of buying a new organ and would insurance companies cover it (Ha!) I can't help thinking that only the very rich would be able to afford a freshly grown organ. If only one day we would be able to bring down the cost of health care. Um, yeah…

Could it be possible that at one point we use a computer system to diagnosis and perhaps even treat patients? What I mean is the computer handles everything without consulting a real doctor. Perhaps this would be cheaper? Of course, this was already thought of in Star Trek Voyager. Could a holo doctor bring down the cost of health care one day in the future? If it was affordable, we could have clinics with a computer system capable of scanning your entire body – sort of like an MRI without having to go into the tube. The holo doctor could then put the prescription in for you at the local pharmacy. Perhaps the rich would have holo doctors in their homes.

Anyway, the Wake Forest Institute has an interesting video on their website, which you can view HERE along with more information on several other interesting developments.

3 comments:

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I think your predictions will probably happen much the same way. It probably will be something that is out of the financial range of most people.

Rusty Carl said...

The day where I can drink myself into a daily stupor without the fear of consequences is almost upon us. New livers on demand! Thank you, science.

Of course, until my doctor mentions something as a treatment possibility I'll still chalk it up to sci fi.

Pat Dilloway said...

The problem is one day the holo doctors will realize the only way to truly eliminate disease is to eliminate the human race entirely...