Browsing articles from "October, 2011"

Hallux Angles

Oct 16, 2011   //   by Orrin Franko   //   All Apps, Clinical, Clinicians, Free, Lower, Residents  // 

Overall: 3+
Functionality: 3
Coolness: 4

This app is a great idea and a novel integration of technology that uses the camera, touch screen, and computational power to help surgeons measure hallux valgus angles based on an xray.  The app first presents the user with a drawing of a foot and identifies the intermetatarsal angle, the distal metatarsal angle, and the hallux valgus angle.  The user selects which angle to measure, and the app pulls up the camera and prompts the user to align the screen with the metatarsal or phalangeal shafts.  It then calculates the angle and presents them on the initial drawing with the option to save and email the image, if desired.  Overall, the app is a great idea and smooth mixing of technologies.  Unfortunately, making the angle measurement dependent on the user’s ability to hold still and keep the camera a constant distance from the image, which has the potential to introduce “noise” into the calculation.  Because most PACS systems are now well-equipped to measure angles, this app is not useful to individuals who use electronic imaging. However, for someone with printed xrays and without a protractor, this app can provide an objective measurement for an otherwise subjective assessment.

Cost: Free
Download Hallux Angles Here

Stryker IVS

Oct 16, 2011   //   by Orrin Franko   //   All Apps, Clinical, Clinicians, Free, iPhone Apps, Patients, Products, Spine  // 

Overall: 4
Functionality: 4
Coolness: 4

Similar to other product- and device-driven applications, Stryker IVS provides information for about Stryker’s line of spine surgery products.  The app is divided into 4 sections: procedures, products, physicians, and sharing.  One unique aspect to this app is that it appears to be aimed for both surgeons and patients.  For example, under the procedures and products sections, there are brief descriptions of the disease or procedure (disc decompression, for example) followed by resources such as videos, images, and documents geared towards both patient education (simplified animated media) as well as surgeon education (product guides and specifications).  Of course, Stryker products are presented adjacent to the pathologies they are intended to treat.  The photos and videos are informative and can help patients understand their disease.  The third section, physicians, returns the contact information of physicians and medical centers within Stryker’s database of spine providers (or so it seems).  I am not entirely certain how this list is generated, but the medical offices that the app presents are all spine or pain centers.  The final section, sharing, is where the user can select documents (product guides) in the products section of the app and then send those apps via email.  Overall, the app is well-made and presents a plethora or medical information, device information, and patient education material in a relatively small and easy-to-navigate interface.  I recommend it for any provider using these devices or for patients interested in learning more about Stryker’s products.

Cost: Free
Download Stryker IVS Here

Synthes

Oct 16, 2011   //   by Orrin Franko   //   Academic, All Apps, Clinical, Clinicians, Free, General Ortho, iPad Apps, iPhone Apps, Lower, Products, Reference, Residents, Trauma, Upper  // 

Overall: 4+
Functionality: 4+
Coolness: 4

Like many other device company apps, the Synthes app can serve as a library and educational resource for surgeons and trainees with regards to Synthes products.  The app is not exclusively for orthopaedic surgeons, and also includes CMF and Vet products, in addition to their Trauma and Spine product lines.  The app comes in both iPad and iPhone versions, which each have navigation interfaces designed specifically for the size of each device. On the iPhone, navigation is simple and consistent with other Synthes product websites by allowing the user to view Key Technologies, Browse by Anatomy, Synthes Solutions, Clinical Resources, and General Resources.  As the user advances through the drill-down navigation screens, more information and more options are provided including images, AO classification systems for the relevant body part, and case studies demonstrating use of their products.  The app is clearly designed for providers, not patients, and hosts a wealth of information that ranges from general tips and techniques to useful images and guides for specific products.  Useful features include in-app links to the Synthes Resident program, Synthes Surgeon.com, and the ability to search the app for a particular product. One limitation of the app is that it requires updates on a weekly basis, which can be frustrating when trying to access information quickly.  Otherwise, the app is well-made, complete, and provides useful information to any surgeon who uses Synthes products.

Cost: Free
Download Synthes Here

Leg.Fractures

Oct 10, 2011   //   by Orrin Franko   //   All Apps, Clinical, Clinicians, Free, iPhone Apps, Lower, Reference, Residents, Students, Trauma  // 

Overall: 2+
Functionality: 3
Coolness: 2

This app was designed by physicians for providers treating lower limb injuries in the UK.  The app has 7 sections: patients, standards-1, standards-2, arterial supply, surface markings, fasciotomies, and pinning of tibia.  The first three sections describe which patients these guidelines apply to, and the “standards” section essentially lists the guidelines that should be performed for these types of patients.  The next 4 sections provide visual aids to inform the reader of the relevant anatomy in regards to the arterial supply, surface landmarks of the leg, cross-section of the leg for fasciotomies, and safe locations for ex-fix pin placement using cross-sectional slices.  Overall, the information presented is very brief yet can serve as a quick refresher for a trainee or surgeon already familiar with the procedure(s).  However, this app does not provide enough information for a student to learn much about the treatment of acute leg trauma.  This small app has valuable information but only at a superficial level and is therefore ideal as a quick reference in only very specific situations.

Cost: Free
Download Leg.Fractures Here

Sigma Knee Replacement

Oct 3, 2011   //   by Orrin Franko   //   All Apps, Arthroplasty, Clinical, Clinicians, Free, iPad Apps, Lower, Patients, Products, Top  // 

Overall: 5
Functionality: 4
Coolness: 5+

With this app, DePuy has set the new standard in device-sponsored surgeon and patient education apps.  The app quickly earns high marks for a smooth and interactive user interface that utilizes rotating platforms to showcase their five headings: early intervention, primary TKA, revision TKA, high performance instrumentation, and professional education.  Each section is filled with information about different products, and each product is supplemented with information about design features, technique overview and guides, specific and unique advantages of the product, surgical technique guides with videos, and more.   There are some especially cool features, such as the “explore” function in the patellofemoral solutions which uses an animated knee that allows the user to flex/extend the knee at will.  This app is currently the “coolest” app available and for a surgeon who uses DePuy joint replacement products, can be especially useful as well. One limitation is that the app is nearly 700 mb in size, which can take a healthy bite out of your iPad storage.  However, after 20 seconds of playing with this app it becomes obvious why so much memory is required.

Cost:Free
Download Sigma Knee Replacement Here

FlipChart

Oct 3, 2011   //   by Orrin Franko   //   All Apps, Arthroplasty, Clinical, Clinicians, Free, iPad Apps, Lower, Patients, Products, Upper  // 

Overall: 3+
Functionality: 3
Coolness: 4

This app is created by Stryker as a patient education tool for surgeons using Stryker total hip, total shoulder, and total knee replacement systems.  The app is organized into charts, my charts, and “create a chart.”  The create a chart feature allows the user to add “pins” to the educational image-based slide show to add commentary within the chart.  A pen is also available to mark the background or highlight particular areas of the image.  Once complete, the chart appears in the “my charts” tab for later reference.  Thus, a surgeon could spend some time creating a personalized chart for his/her surgeries and then use that chart to education patients in clinic about what the procedure will entail.  Overall, the user interface is very simple and easy to navigate and the app is well-made.  As a patient education tool, this may be useful for surgeons who have time to explain the details of surgery to patients accompanied by images.

Cost:Free
Download FlipChart Here

 

inMotion

Oct 3, 2011   //   by Orrin Franko   //   All Apps, Arthroplasty, Clinical, Clinicians, Free, iPad Apps, Lower, Patients, Products, Reference, Top  // 

Overall: 4+
Functionality: 4
Coolness: 5

This app is created by Stryker and is an impressive patient education tool with regard to the two advertised devices: a total knee and a total hip arthroplasty.  What makes this app unique, however, is the integration of computer animation, video, and audio that includes a highly realistic anatomical model with the options to select anatomic structures and make them transparent or hide them during the demonstration.  This is truly the future of medicine.  For example, you might show a patient hip motion after a total hip arthroplasty procedure, and during the video the user can “hide” any overlying muscles or bones to reveal the implant, or you can add them back one-by-one to demonstrate the relative anatomy.  Overall, this app should be downloaded for the coolness factor alone.  It would make a great resource for a waiting room, but of course this is probably most useful to surgeons using Stryker’s products.

Cost:Free
Download inMotion Here

OpTech Live

Oct 3, 2011   //   by Orrin Franko   //   Academic, All Apps, Arthroplasty, Clinical, Clinicians, Free, General Ortho, iPad Apps, Lower, Products, Reference, Residents, Sports, Trauma, Upper  // 

Overall: 4
Functionality: 4
Coolness: 2+

This app is part of Stryker’s library of applications and, like other device company apps, provides the user with a library of device and implant user guides.  The interface is well-organized by topic and lists PDF guides according to specialty or body part.  Selecting an item quickly downloads the PDF surgical technique guide which can then be saved in a library on the device (for referencing later) or a link to the document can be emailed.  Browsing for topics is very easy with essentially no delay.  For access to Stryker’s line of technique guides, this app does everything it should.

Cost: Free
Download OpTech Live Here

Eponyms

Oct 3, 2011   //   by Orrin Franko   //   All Apps, Clinical, Clinicians, General Medical, General Ortho, iPad Apps, iPhone Apps, Reference, Students, Under $10, Under $5  // 

Overall: 4
Functionality: 4
Coolness: 2+

This app does exactly what it advertises: it organizes and defines medical eponyms based on specialty.  The user can view all eponyms, or you can choose to sort by topic.  Orthopedics has its own heading with about 150 common eponyms for diseases, fractures, signs, and clinical exam tests.  This app may not be particularly useful to a orthopaedic provider, however for a medical student rotating on an orthopaedic service, this can be a very handy reference guide.  Explanations are very short and do not provide much detail.  However, there is a good search feature that searches the eponym title, as well as its description.  For example, searching for “supra” returns the Hawkin’s sign because the definition notes that it tests for supraspinatus tendon impingement.  The user can also mark eponyms as “favorites.”  When not limiting the search to orthopedics, the app has over 1700 eponyms!  While not the most useful to residents or surgeons, this app would be very useful to medical students or interns.

Cost: Free (for students) or $1.99
Download Eponyms Here

DrawMD Orthopedics

Oct 3, 2011   //   by Orrin Franko   //   All Apps, Arthroplasty, Clinical, Clinicians, Free, General Ortho, iPad Apps, Lower, Residents, Spine, Sports, Top, Trauma, Upper  // 

Overall: 4+
Functionality: 4
Coolness: 4+

Part of the DrawMD line of apps, these developers have created a novel platform for teaching patients about their medical conditions.  The app is essentially a “scratch pad” for showing patients their disease, demonstrating surgical techniques, and explaining anatomy.  The advantage of the Orthopedics version is that in addition to being able to use a patient’s xrays as your background, the app comes pre-loaded with orthopaedic body parts and orthopaedic “stamps.”  For example, the current version includes images of the knee, shoulder, hip, hands, feet, ankles, forearm, etc.,  as well as stamps that demonstrate cartilage, fractures, plates, screws, and arthroplasty implants (and many more).  The user can mark the image with a pen and make text comments as well.  Once complete, the image can be saved or emailed to a patient with your office information.  This app is a free and novel way to teach patients about their pathology and treatment options in a visual format.

Cost: Free
Download Here

DePuy Lateral Interbody Fusion

Oct 1, 2011   //   by Orrin Franko   //   All Apps, Clinical, Clinicians, Free, iPhone Apps, Patients, Spine  // 

Overall: 1 or 3+*
Functionality: 1 or 3+*
Coolness: 4

This app provides information, resources, and education for surgeons who use or are interested in learning more about DePuy’s minimally invasive spine products.  The application includes information about the surgical technique, with both guides and videos, as well as additional resources for the variety of products that the app promotes.  The images are very clear and well-presented, and the app includes PDF versions of the full product guides.  As expected, the app includes contact information to find out more about their products.

Cost: Free
Download Here

DASH Learn

Oct 1, 2011   //   by Orrin Franko   //   All Apps, Arthroplasty, Clinicians, Free, iPhone Apps, Patients, Products  // 

Overall: 1 or 4*
Functionality: 1 or 4*
Coolness: 5

Smith & Nephew DASH is a portable surgical navigation system designed to assist surgeons with hip and knee surgery, and the DASH Learn app is a free utility with information about the product, tutorials, troubleshooting tips, and contact information for the company.  The app itself includes a variety of instructional videos and techniques to assist a surgeon who already uses DASH and appear to be quite useful.  However, for someone who is not familiar with the product or not interested in the product, the app would not be useful.  If a surgeon interested in learning more about this system, there is a 2 minute tutorial video from the main start page, however I suspect a similar video could be found elsewhere online or at the product website without having to download the app.  *The asterisk denotes that the functionality is either a 1 (if you do not use the product) or a 4 (if you do use the product).

 Cost: Free
Download Here

ASSH 2011

Oct 1, 2011   //   by Orrin Franko   //   Academic, All Apps, Clinicians, Free, iPad Apps, iPhone Apps, News, Upper  // 

Overall: 4+
Functionality: 4
Coolness: 5

The American Society for Surgery of the Hand has demonstrated they are leading the pack with regards to technological integration in their annual conference.  At the 2011 ASSH meeting they introduced a fully-functional meeting-integrated app that was available (and continues to be) available for free.  The app includes a plethora of resources such as viewing the conference schedule, a personal calendar, program, maps, speakers, presentations, ePosters, share contact information, and search for interesting topics.  Even more impressive was the integration among the different functionalities.  For example, you can select a presentation to attend and the app will remind you the presentation is coming up, will show you on a map where to go, presents you with the abstract and notes for the presentation, and allows you to search for other talks by the same author/presenter.  All of these features are well integrated and make the conference experience much more interactive and interesting.  It is my hope that other specialty societies will notice this app and integrate similar features into their annual meetings.

Cost: Free
Download Here

SugarSync

Oct 1, 2011   //   by Orrin Franko   //   Academic, All Apps, Android Apps, Clinicians, Free, General Ortho, iPad Apps, iPhone Apps, Products, Residents, Students, Top, Utilities  // 

Overall: 4+
Functionality: 5
Coolness: 5

SugarSync is actually a cloud-based data back-up service that includes the use of their free apps.  But, because most surgeons are probably under-protected with regard to the security of their digital data, I strongly advocate the use of some type of auto-backup service, such as SugarSync or one of its competitors.  After paying for a subscription and installing the program onto as many computers as you would like, SugarSync will automatically back up your data in real-time both to the cloud, as well as between computers.  For example, in my home I sync my two laptops so that the data between my “home” computer and my “work” computer are always matched.  Then, I also sync specific folders (such as photos) between my computers and my wife’s computer.  Copying/transferring files with flash drives and emailing document versions have become obsolete.  Lastly, because I have the app installed on my phone and my iPad, I can access any file from anywhere, any time.  That includes photos, documents, or reading material and includes the ability to email the files directly to a colleague.  The price is competitive, and the functionality has redefined the way I manage my data.  For more information, see my FAQ section.

 Cost: Free app with subscription service.
Download Here

NeuroMind

Oct 1, 2011   //   by Orrin Franko   //   All Apps, Clinical, Clinicians, Free, iPhone Apps, Reference, Residents, Spine, Students, Trauma  // 

Overall: 2+
Functionality: 3
Coolness: 1

This app was designed for neurosurgeons, however the content includes spine and spine trauma information that would also be valuable to orthopaedic trainees and spine surgeons.  The interface is nothing more than a listing of classification systems roughly organized by specialty such as general, motor, spine, spine trauma, tumor, and vascular.  For spine and spine trauma there are about 18 classification systems listed and selecting a topic provides the user with a text description of the classification table and a reference. There is no fancy interface design, no graphics, and no ability to save “favorites” for quick reference.  But, for someone who needs access to a list of spine classification tables, this is a free and light app to keep in your pocket.  Overall, this is probably useful to only a select group of individuals.

Cost: Free
Download Here

JBJS Br Abstract Manager

Oct 1, 2011   //   by Orrin Franko   //   Academic, All Apps, Android Apps, Clinicians, Free, General Ortho, iPhone Apps, Journals/Books, Residents, Students  // 
Overall: 2+
Functionality: 3+
Coolness: 1

This app is certainly a step in the right direction for peer-reviewed journals by allowing surgeons to search for and access content on their mobile devices.  The app continues to evolve into a more robust and usable form that suffers from occasional glitches.  The menu allows the user to browse abstracts in each journal edition and search for content using “watch words” or standard author/title/year/abstract search techniques.  The abstracts worked well for me, and allow for a review as well as the option to email the abstract to a colleague. However, the watch-word functionality was not working properly.  Once the kinks have been worked out, this may be a very useful app depending on how easy it will be for users to view and download material.  Until then, consider using other RSS feed apps, such as BoneFeed, to access the same content.

iPhone Free Download
iPad
Android Free Download

 

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