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Painless Needles Inspired by Nicotine Patch

HP Electronic Plaster

— November 8, 2007 — Unique
Scared of needles? Fret no more! According to Computer World, Hewlett-Packard has revolutionized its printing technology to squeeze larger than ever molecules into 150 micrometer large needles that are bundled onto an electronic plaster.

In fact, there are similar needles to those used to “inject” ink onto paper. Ok, there is still a needle involved, but it's no different to using a nicotine patch. In fact, that is where the idea originates. However, until now, only molecules as small as, say, nicotine were able to penetrate the skin without injection.

Now even bigger molecules can find their way into your body, without any pain. Not only does the electronic patch inject substances into your skin without reaching your oh-so-sensitive nerves, it can even be programmed to do so at a predetermined frequency, time or dosage.

See, you big sissy, that wasn't so bad (unless of course your doctor needs a blood sample).

My food for thought: Little tech-nurses like these seem to be overhauling the traditional job description of doctors and nurses. Soon, you might find yourself lying down on the surgery table next to the living room to get a liver transplant from your buddy, while watching the footy. Ok, that's a bit far fetched, but nonetheless, robots and computers are increasingly taking over the medical industry and we're bound to find more and more gadgets like these popping up to give our (western) society more on-demand, easy to use medical treatment. Seeing that as society ages and traditional family structures disintegrate into a single-person-household-society such inventions will become indispensable. After all, who will inject your butt with your next shot of anti-Alzheimer drugs, if not your automated plaster?
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