Are Selfies The Future Of Medicine?

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IMG_0103Photographed by Jessica Nash.
Guys, we have seen the future — and it's your iPhone. Or, at least where your health is concerned. A new study published in JAMA Dermatology suggests that everyone's favorite party trick — the selfie — could be the new way to diagnose certain skin conditions.

Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania tested the effects of teledermatology. You know, when you text your doctor a picture of your face. They focused on 50 individuals in a hospital who required a skin assessment. All patients received an in-person consultation, but the researchers also sent the photos to another set of off-site dermatologists. And, when in-person doctors recommended a biopsy, the remote doctors agreed 95% of the time. Cool, huh?

Another tele-service that's gaining popularity is Doctor On Demand. This particular program gives you 24/7 access to a doctor via telephone. You can ask them all the questions you'd like. And, for the rest of February, the service is free.

Remote services certainly need to be confirmed as adequate substitutions before they can become a mainstream practice. But, in the meantime, you can stop Snapchatting your friends pictures of what you think is a new mole. (Time)