After the Sheba Medical Center in Ramat Gan was named in the top 10 medical centres in the world, we wanted to reflect on some of the best medical advances produced by the Holy Land in recent years.
Argo Medical Technologies’ ReWalk robotic exoskeleton has gained huge media attention for allowing paraplegics to walk and run, and it was even used in the London and Tel Aviv marathons. In addition to being featured in the TV show “Glee,” the ReWalk Rehabilitation model currently is used by patients in rehabilitation centers across North America and Europe. There is also a model for everyday use, known as the ReWalk Personal, and it is currently available throughout Europe and awaiting FDA clearance in the United States.
The PillCam is still to date one of Israel’s most well-known and successful medical devices. Created by Given Imaging, the pill which is swallowed contains a small camera, making it an easier and less invasive form of an endoscopy and can detect disorders of the GI tract.
Nano Retina’s Bio-Retina, a tiny implantable device inserted into the retina in a 30-minute procedure, turns into an artificial retina that melds to the neurons in the eye. Activated by special eyeglasses, the device transforms natural light into an electrical impulse that stimulates neurons to send images to the brain. The prototype is advancing quickly through clinical trials.
Further developments are expected to be made in the fields of listening devices and dry eye treatment. In 2007, Audiodent developed an innovative hearing aid that clips easily inside the mouth, using the teeth and jawbone to transmit sound to the brain – improving sound quality enormously, particularly in loud places.
Looking at the future of medicine in Israel, Yaacov Nitzan of WhiteSwell has raised $30 million series B funding for the treatment to remove excess fluid from lungs and other organs. The process uses a catheter and is minimally invasive, to treat acute decompensated heart failure (ADHF).
In medicinal cannabis, Israel has continued to grow its research since Professor Raphael Mechoulam in 1964 established the foundations for scientific research. Seedo, a new company, has created the world’s first fully automated growing device for medical cannabis. Resembling a mini-fridge, the device is powered by algorithms and monitored by a smartphone app, effectively running as an independent cannabis growing machine.
London-based duo Yosi Romano and Ziv Leinwand’s new product called Brizi, is set to revolutionize air distribution for children’s prams. The built in extractor pushes out unwanted air and passes only clean air to the baby in the pram, something that is well targeted for young parents and children in busy cities.