10-year anniversary: 3 ways Apple's iPhone has influenced medicine

Apple launched the first iPhone 10 years ago this week.

The tech company's now signature device has left its mark on nearly every facet of society, including the medical community.

Here are three ways the iPhone has affected modern medicine, according to Ars Technica, a tech news publication.

  1. Digital resources. Many traditional medical books are too cumbersome for physicians to carry during rounds. To avoid carrying bulky books, starting in 2001, UCLA required medical students to carry personal digital assistants packed with medical tools — a medical encyclopedia, drug dosing information and clinical decision support software. After the release of the iPhone, PDAs were quickly ditched, and by 2009 iPhones were the new requirement.

  1. Medical education. Traditional medical education underscored the importance of rote memorization. Today, mobile devices brimming with medical resources fit in palm of a physician's hand, allowing physicians instantaneously access clinical information on the go. Since the advent of the iPhone, medical school education has placed less emphasis on memorization and instead tries to build a framework students can draw upon and add to.

  1. Physician aides. Both patients and physicians can use their iPhones to access high-quality clinical reference sites to look up medical information. There are also clinical decision apps that provide physicians with quick equations and algorithms to calculate a patient's risk for stroke at the patient bedside, among other tasks. These have created a more informed patient community as well as a more efficient physician workforce.

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