Spotlight On... Cedars-Sinai researchers find Parkinson's disease wearable tracker useful to tailor treatment; NIH launches program to reduce surgical outcome disparities; Jury hits Intuitive Surgical with $30M payout; and more...

The FDA approved the Personal KinetiGraph in late 2014. The wrist-worn device tracks the movements of Parkinson's disease patients every two minutes over anywhere from 6 to 10 days. After the approval, Cedars-Sinai researchers started a 60-patient clinical trial to demonstrate the device's effectiveness. In preliminary results, they have found that the device is useful in enabling a more objective measurement of symptoms--thereby enabling physicians to better tailor medications. "It's virtually impossible to make a well-informed treatment plan based on how patients feel they have been doing in the last three months because often they don't remember," said Dr. Michele Tagliati, director of the Movement Disorders Program in the Department of Neurology at Cedars-Sinai, in a statement. "The PKG device provides a quantitative way to monitor and understand the fluctuations of movements in our patients when they are not in the office." More

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> The National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities, part of the National Institutes of Health, has started an initiative to support research to reduce disparities in surgical outcomes for disadvantages populations such as racial or socioeconomic groups. More

> A California jury awarded a woman who had suffered internal injuries after a robot-assisted hysterectomy $30 million in damages from Intuitive Surgical ($ISRG). More

> St. Jude Medical ($STJ) has launched its EnSite Precision Cardiac Mapping System for use in cardiac arrhythmia treatment in 9 European countries. More