Web Based eDiagnosis Support System for Lower Back Pain

An intelligent, Web-based e-DSS was designed, implemented, and evaluated to support clinicians' diagnosis of LBP problems. Key objectives of this design included verifiable knowledge, validated system utility and clinical efficacy, and user-friendly interfaces for knowledge access and update. The Web is a prevailing platform that allows round-the-clock access to the e-DSS, without geographic constraints (Bharati and Chaudhury, in press) in addition to assisting clinicians' diagnoses, this...

Profiling of Community Health Performance Indicators Case

During times of increasing uncertainty, gathering massive amounts of data is insufficient without the ability to transform the data into critical information and organized knowledge to support intelligent decision making and policymaking at all levels. Information technology (IT) can play a significant role in that transformation. For example, a technologically driven program for public and community health that applies software tools and analytical methods such as intelligent software, data...

Systems Thinking and Analysis

Over the past fifty years, systems thinking and analysis have developed a body of knowledge and tools to make the complete patterns embedded in systems clearer and to help us see how to change them effectively. One such approach involves the execution of five learning disciplines personal mastery, shared vision, mental models, team learning, and the overarching discipline of systems thinking (Senge, 1990). Systems thinking means seeing the connections among the processes of change, not just...

Traditional Versus Virtual Reality Therapy VRT

Medicine and other cognitive-behavioral therapies have traditionally provided remedies for phobias. The most effective and well-recognized phobia therapy is exposure therapy that is, gradually exposing people with phobias to the stimuli that cause fear. For example, repeated exposure to footbridges, outdoor balconies, and glass elevators, virtual or otherwise, has been proven to successfully decrease patients' fear of heights and, furthermore, to change their previous outlook on heights as they...

Home Care Applications

With the development of portable monitoring devices and the diffusion of the Internet, the number of e-home care applications started to increase in the 1990s. Sparks and others (1993) investigated the use of exercise monitoring via telephone as an alternative for cardiac rehabilitation patients who were unable to participate in a hospital-based program. The study was conducted as a randomized, controlled trial and provided indications that this kind of monitoring was an effective supplement to...

Virtual Reality in Phobia Therapy

Acrophobia (fear of heights) can be a debilitating phobia. People with acrophobia avoid heights whenever possible, and this can interfere with their daily activities and routines. Therapy often takes the form of exposing these victims to varying heights in order to decrease their level of anxiety. Traditional therapy entails placing the victims in increasingly threatening real-life situations (in vivo exposure), controlling the exposure periods. VR effectiveness studies conducted on acrophobia...

Home Care Concepts

The goal of making e-health care systems sustainable in this era of health care reform and fiscal constraints focuses on improving quality and health outcomes while delivering health care services using cost-effective methods. Providing responsive and dynamic health care requires the effective and coordinated use of new information and communications technologies. E-home care is an innovative approach that has the potential to improve our health care delivery system by meeting the growing need...

Medicine in Ethiopia

For the last decade, Ethiopia has been planning a long-term national health care strategy to increase the number of citizens receiving care and to decrease the subsequent health care costs. However, health problems such as HIV AIDS and malaria, combined with high population growth rates 2.6 percent in 2002 , have increased the demand for health care services and have resulted in more expensive treatments. Moreover, slow economic growth and funding of the health sectors have not kept up with...

The Contributors

Qiang Cheng, Ph.D., is an assistant professor in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at Wayne State University in Detroit, Michigan. He received B.S. and M.S. degrees from Peking University in China in 1994 and 1996, respectively, and his Ph.D. in electrical and computer engineering from the University of Illinois at Ur-bana-Champaign in 2002. He received the Invention Achievement Award from IBM's T.J. Watson Research Center in 2001. His research interests include multimedia...