Archive for the ‘Social Media’ Category

Facebook’s testing new suicide prevention tools powered by artificial intelligence

March 1, 2017 Leave a comment

Facebook is lifting the lid on a host of new suicide prevention tools today, as the social network doubles down on efforts to help curb one of the leading causes of death in 15-29 year olds.

Categories: Social Media

The future of healthcare is here and it is a telehealth marketplace.

October 8, 2014 Leave a comment

There is no doubt that Telemedicine is the future in  healthcare. Laws and Regulations are changing and evolving at an exponential pace. In order for doctors and patients to take full advantage of telehealth and telemedicine, a platform cannot focus on the present but needs to be able to seamlessly evolve and adapt to the future. The Co-Founders of Curely (proud to be one of them) figured this out when we met at Singularity University  Exponential Medicine. With the help of a “Dream Team” Advisory board, Medical Visionaries, and Engineers, Curely has anticipated  the future of medicine. The first step is focusing on the  “SOUL” of medicine. It is not the doctor or patient as a single entity but them as a whole. We believe it’s the collaboration of both Doctors and Consumers.


Curely is a Telehealth-Marketplace, in other words it is the “Uber” or “Airbnb” of Medicine. It enables you to speak directly with doctors all over the world and inform yourselves on everyday health issues.  You can decide to have a free 5 minute consultation or place a bid for a premium consultation.  We see the interaction being similar to that of talking to doctor friends, or doctors in the family that speak freely and truthfully. As physicians we understand the frustrations that can ensue from making a doctors appointment, driving to the clinic, waiting in the lobby for only a short session. We aim to change that. We want you to be in control, whether it is choosing a doctor, language or even setting your own price. At the end of the session, you get to review your doctor. If you liked the doctor, hand out badges that will help their clinic and their reputation or share on your social media to promote their online clinic.


1) Curely allows you to test the waters of Telemedicine or Telehealth by interacting with patients the way it was meant to be. A direct and honest conversation. The way you would speak to your father, brother if they had a medical question. At this point in time it is not meant to substitute a clinical visit. But, as I said, we are anticipating this, and Curely will evolve on designated time frames.

2) Some of you are already comfortable with social networks, interacting with patients this way. Gain reputation points, badges that will improve your future Online Clinic in the platform. Help educate and inform consumers of their everyday health questions and give them clarity. By using Curely at this point you will gain an advantage over others to kick start your online reputation and your practice.

3) If you do not want to test Curely, I invite you to test other platforms and explore telemedicine. If you are not open to such technology at this point in time, the future will bring an interesting awakening.

Changing the way healthcare or medicine is offered is challenging. We need to regain the trust that has been destroyed.

For those consumers looking for answers, (Myself included) next time you have a question, come and try Curely. Why go to the internet and do a search when you can talk with top of the line specialists in many cases for free? At this stage you are coming to Curely to inform yourselves, to learn, and get particular recommendations. It is Not meant to substitute an in-person  clinic visit.

Current Feedbacks from our beta-consumers and doctors have been very positive to say the least. As we evolve, It will only get better. For now… Welcome to Curely, welcome to the future of Healthcare.

The Exponential Regurgitation of Misinformation is real and dangerous

September 20, 2014 Leave a comment

As the adoption of Social Networks has increased over the last couple of years we have also witnessed a shift of the material that is posted and shared by individuals. Unless you go to reddit, in which Cat posts predominate (kidding btw I love reddit, recommend /r/science, futurology, technology). Many blogs out there tend to find an interesting article from a scientific journal one that is popular in the news and change the title to a “Sexy” provocative combination of words that will awaken an urge to click. Why? Because Clicks = traffic, Traffic = money from Ads.speaker-stop-vomiting-information.jpg-e1406587759559 copy

I will not mention blog names but you all know which they are. In many cases people retweet, re-share content without really reading the article. They get enamored by the sexy title and enjoy the likes, shares, retweets etc. In order not to spread  erroneous information, it is  extremely important, at least  in medical related material, to question and learn more before re-sharing and re-tweeting.

Thus -> The  Exponential Regurgitation of Misinformation Factor (ERoM Factor). Which addresses the number of times a trending topic has been posted without it being properly digested by the reader
0) User read scientific related data and agrees with the post.
1) Post impacting the individuals life or daily conversations
2) Post impacting the poster’s friends, family, acquaintances circles
3) Post impacting other individuals by the shares of his circles.

Hopefully your next science or medical shared posts have an EROM Factor of 0

The Society of Coronary Angiography and Interventions: Words of Wisdom for Using Social Media, from a Twitter Guru

June 21, 2014 Leave a comment

Categories: Social Media

TeleMentor gives procedure impacting advice to Interventional Cardiologist performing PFO closure through GoogleGLASS

November 26, 2013 2 comments

In the past, fellow GLASS Explorers like Rafael Grossman and Heather Evans have demonstrated how Google GLASS can help doctors obtain important recommendations from other experts via live-streaming.

Screen Shot 2013-11-25 at 8.53.16 PM

In a recent sequence of serendipitous events occurring at UAMS,  Dr. Eudice Fontenot, Pediatric Interventional Cardiologist from Arkansas Children’s Hospital provided valuable insight to a team of interventional cardiologists (Dr. Barry Uretsky, Dr. Abdul Hakeem and GLASS explorer Dr. Christian Assad-Kottner) who  performed  a Patent Foramen Ovale  (PFO) Closure


PFO closures are usually performed in children and adolescents who have symptoms secondary to significant Right to Left shunts, in non-medical terms, significant non-oxygenated blood mixing with oxygenated blood.  On occasion, secondary to anatomical changes in adulthood, a PFO which was not significant can turn into a defect which needs correction. Such was the case we recently encountered. A PFO closure is not something performed frequently in adults, and an even an expert interventional cardiologist could have accumulated 25-50 cases through their career. Even though the procedure could have been done safely by the operator, we decided to contact a pediatric interventional cardiologist, who performs this procedure  more frequently.


Uretsky agreeing with Fontenot and retrieving amplatzer with Dr. hakeem. ThROUGHGLASS

This is where we saw an opportunity to  use of Google GLASS as a way of Livestreaming the procedure to the telementor and obtain his advice in real time. The next step was obvious, before anything, I spoke in detail with the patient (which by the way I will be disclosing his name soon because he wants me to do so as well as his family). I explained to him how we would use GLASS and Hangouts to stream the procedure to an expert who has abundant experience on PFO closures on children, and if needed he could instantly provide his advice. Needless to say, he understood the potential of such a dynamic and was excited to be part of it.

Nov 19 the procedure occurred. We initially had planned to stream the hangout to the tele-mentor at Arkansas Children’s Hospital, but due to heavily leaded walls in the catheterization lab affecting the current data connection, and GLASS being a beta-gadget, we decided to have the expert nearby in case we needed him.


Patient was anesthetized, intubated, and  Transesophageal echocardiogram  performed to guide the implantation of the Amplatzer closure device. Shortly after, access was obtained with a femoral sheath and the device was inserted and advanced to the left atrium across the PFO. At this point in time, the interventional cardiology team spotted a mobile artifact within the tip of the amplatzer highly suggestive of thrombus. These images were transmitted live to the tele-mentor who agreed on the diagnosis and suggested at this point to retrieve the device to avoid the possibility of a thromboembolic event. When the device was retrieved, we confirmed our suspicion, a thrombus in the tip of the amplatzer was observed. The tele-mentor further guided us on how to flush the sheath and adequately clean the thrombus from the device. At this point in time we decided to end transmission and ask the tele-mentor to come to  the cath lab to provide further recommendations.  Soon after the device was reinserted, deployed with excellent angiographic, echocardiographic and physiologic results.  Procedure was a success and patient was subsequently discharged with adequate arterial oxygen saturation, effectively treating his problem.

After discussion with my colleague and Google GLASS pioneer Rafael Grossman MD, we agreed that this was the first time that the advice given by an expert through Google GLASS directly impacted and helped the decisions made in a medical procedure.

Example of looking at TEE monitor with GLASS to demonstrate quality


AMplatzer deployed without complications

Whole story to be released soon via another source, with procedure pictures, names and more details


Categories: Health, Social Media, TechMed

Are we protecting patient information more than the patient?

September 23, 2013 1 comment

We are living an era of disruption in which exponential technologies have the potential to change dramatically the way medicine is practiced but in order to do so certain regulations need to also do so.


As other Medical Google GLASS explorers, I am disappointed and frustrated on the concern of incorporating such technology in a faster pace in the hospital. Yes, there are pros and cons but let me mention what is the most important pro, PATIENT OUTCOMES!

Every time I stumble with people asking me about what GLASS can do, I am happy to do so. In addition I tell them about my projects in medicine as well as how colleagues are using them in telemedicine and telementoring like Rafael Grossman. Needless to say they are all impressed. After talking with them I go ahead and describe a scenario.

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“Imagine you are in the cathlab or in the operating room and your doctor is performing a particular procedure.Suddenly he/she faces a situation in which he would like a second opinion from a colleague to make sure he is making the right call. In order to do this your doctor could use Google GLASS and communicate via HANGOUTS. Your information could be intercepted by wandering eyes in the transfer, but at the end your doctor will get relevant feedback. If this impacted your outcome, would you care about your privacy in this point in time?

So far, out of approximately 50 people I have asked this question, 100% said they could not care less. If this will help the doctor GO AHEAD! It is the patient’s data! Shouldn’t he/she decide how it is going to be used?

The reader may argue on this but, If I am the patient, and my doctor wants a second opinion from another doctor, and this implies him using google glass in a non secured network to impact outcome. I could not care less…


Categories: Health, Social Media, TechMed

Impact of Emerging Exponential Technologies in the way we practice Medicine

August 2, 2012 Leave a comment

I was asked to give a talk in my University which is The University of Texas Medical Branch, regarding exponential technologies in Medicine. For those who do not know me, I am a cardiologist who is passionate about incorporating technology into  medicine. I have no doubt that major changes will be happening in the incoming years in the way we practice as well as how we engage with our patients. Click here for the link to see or download or copy paste

Before giving the talk I overheard people saying “it is a joke, this is a cardiology meeting, what is he talking about” I also heard others with more positive comments.  As one of my slides states “The problem with close minded people is that their mouths are always open”.

Soon after initiating my talk I could see how the audience became captivated with what I had to say. My goal was to open some eyes to the potential of exponential technologies. I wanted to show them technologies that are and will be game changers in our every day practice, and hopefully ignite some light bulbs to stop conventional routine thinking and dream a little…

Hope you like the slides

Update: 3 hours after the upload it became top presentation of the day, 6 hours later top presentation talked about in facebook, and 36 hours later 30,000 views


Twitter: @christianassad

E-Mail: christian.assad-kottner at

Categories: Health, Social Media, TechMed

How to Jump in the Social Media Healthcare bandwagon easily and smoothly

May 5, 2012 5 comments

     More and more we are hearing about social media and the potential it has on healthcare. A trend has been picking up and many doctors already feel comfortable using these different tools PROPERLY. However, many MDs, Residents and Fellows in training are dubious and hesitant about using social media. I have been an advocate about its potential for several years now and tried to get others involved but with ambiguous success. Examples could be Twitter, Facebook, Google +, Foursquare, and even medical directed social apps like Doximity.

A recent article talks about this, published in the Houston Business Journal, “Houston hospitals, doctors infected by social media” talks about the importance of Social Media in healthcare and why more doctors should be adopting it. Well, for those of you that want to start slowly, for those that are scared about embarking in this area and are hesitant about using facebook or twitter there is a simple answer for you to test drive it. The answer is Yammer.

Yammer is a social platform that allows you create a private social network specifically for your institution, business, clinic etc. All you need is the same domain in the email and off you go. In case this is not possible an external social network is possible. By the way thanks to Nate Osit for recommending it!

An example of a way that I implemented Yammer is as a learning tool. I created a group inside yammer called “Cardiology Lounge” (being a Cardiology Fellow). In this group, residents, fellows, and faculty post questions of interesting cases, ,discussions, pictures, etc. It is creating a learning environment which is fun secondary to the interaction with each other. If you are walking in the hallway you can login to Yammer, check the group and in a few minutes see whats cooking. No useless status updates like we are sometimes exposed in facebook.

In my opinion, if you are new to social media, and want to try it slowly try out yammer. Feel Free to contact me

Twitter @christianassad

E-Mail: chassadk at

Categories: Health, Social Media

A Tattoo that has your Medical Record?

August 30, 2011 Leave a comment

No, this is not a Rorschach test. What you are seeing here is a QR Code which is the abbreviation of Quick Response Code.  A QR code is the “cousin” of the barcode we all know. Originally it was designed to track parts in the vehicle manufacturing scenario but smartphones have found a whole different use for this “mutated” barcodes. While a bar code can only hold 20 numerical digits a QR code is a two dimensional matrix barcode which can hold thousands of characters. Therefore they become more useful to people since they can practically link any information to a QR Code.

Anyone who wants, can create his/her own QR Code with any given information he would like to share. People as well as businesses can share Webpages, Contact Information, Business information, etc.  you name it.

An interesting phenomenon is happening among young people which I have been witnessing more and more and that is QR Tattoos. At first it sounds like another weird way to grab attention but it has the potential to be another option to have your medical record always with you in my opinion.  Creating a QR Code is simple. Just google “make QR code” and you’ll find several options, free and those with a price tag.  Your QR Code has the potential to share any type of information, so why not a medical record? No such thing exists or at least that I am aware of, but,  in a near future,  with a little work, you could practically link your QR code to your medical record. With little imagination you can see how useful this could be and even how a tattoo could save your life.

For those of us that do not like tattoos maybe this could change our mind 😉

Anyways just food for thought!

Categories: Social Media

Hey Doc, Think your twitter account got hacked.

July 4, 2011 Leave a comment

It is no news that any account can be hacked. In the past we have seen multiple celebrity twitter accounts being hacked and just today we saw Fox News Political Twitter account being hacked. An account with 34,000 followers hacked spreading false news about President Obama being shot… Once this false news was tweeted it got retweeted y 100+ people.  A very distasteful rumor was being spread fast but thankfully got caught on time.

Ok, new, different scenario. How many times have you seen someone forgetting to logout of a facebook account? Twitter account? Any account? Multiple times I have witnessed pranks played on such accounts in the hospital or different settings. Before it was no big issue but as people start using SoMe more in  professional way, the fact that someone can post an inappropriate remark or picture on your account can place you in an uncomfortable position and create a need to clarify the scenario to the people that “follow” you.

Just a quick reminder to all of you logging in public computers.  Make sure your username and passwords are not remembered. Use difficult passwords and change them often. Ex. Su$him@kiz%.  At least that was one of mine in the past and I change them often.

It may be uncomfortable but It would be more uncomfortable having someone posting embarrassing fake posts in your twitter or facebook  account and then needing to clear it up to your followers. I have seen this multiple times in public computers in hospitals.

A very cool Hacked Infographic was presented to me recently: The data presented is very interesting and might waken up some people 😉


Categories: Social Media