“…in just a week, a team of faculty and students at Rice University has developed an automated bag valve mask ventilator using $300 worth of parts off the shelf. The programmable ventilator is designed for less critical patients, so that larger ventilators can be freed up for others. The team is making plans available to anyone who wants to build the units.

MEDICAL NOTES 20-17


Medical Notes this week…


A blood test for many types of cancer has been a long-sought goal of researchers… and now they’re much closer. A study in the Annals Of Oncology shows that a blood test looking for cancer DNA can find 50 different kinds of cancer, often before any symptoms appear. However, the test has limitations for now. It’s correct 99 percent of the time when it says cancer is present and 90 percent of the time it can report what kind of cancer it is, but the test missed more than half the cancers that were present. And the results were even worse in early cancer stages. Scientists will be working to eliminate false negatives.

Healthcare workers on the front lines of COVID-19 are struggling with a shortage of ventilators. But in just a week, a team of faculty and students at Rice University has developed an automated bag valve mask ventilator using $300 worth of parts off the shelf. The programmable ventilator is designed for less critical patients, so that larger ventilators can be freed up for others. The team is making plans available to anyone who wants to build the units.

And finally, a lot of us complain we’ve gained weight during the pandemic lock-in. But a study from the University of Michigan finds that if you talk to yourself in the third person by name, you’ll be less likely to cave in to tempting foods. Rather than saying “What do I want? That chocolate cake,” say “Joe, what do you want?”