Right Turn: Health care solutions on demand through 3D printing

3D printing is a topic we’ve covered before at Signals. It’s still hot and trendy, and still making the cut on top technology lists. Back in 2012, Chris Anderson, the former editor-in-chief of Wired, predicted that 3D printing “will be bigger than the web.” Given that good 3D printers are now cheap enough (US$150) to be affordable for home use and that everyone from shoe companies to airplane engineers to the space station are using…

Continue reading


Learning Empathy

The existence of empathy and altruistic behaviour among various species of animals has been amply demonstrated. Among elephants, examples include comforting members of the herd who are frightened, rescuing others when they get get stuck in mud holes, and adopting orphaned babies. Chimpanzees and bonobos display sophisticated altruistic behaviours in dealing with weak or disabled members of their troops, trying to help them stand, bringing them food, and covering them with vegetation after confirming that…

Continue reading


Sugar taxes for the win

Today’s post comes from friend and colleague Dr Allana LeBlanc.  You can find more on Dr LeBlanc at the bottom of this post. When will the sugar tax come to Canada? It’s become a question of when and not if we will start taxing sugar sweetened beverages like Coke and Pepsi. Let’s just hope Canadians are a bit quicker on jumping on the bandwagon for this than they were for the implementation of banning trans…

Continue reading


The Ultimate Dog Training Tip

The one thing every dog owner should know about how to train a dog.There’s a lot of incorrect dog training advice on the internet, which makes it hard for people with dogs to sort out which advice is good and which is not.Does it matter? Some of the time, despite using methods that aren’t recommended by professional organizations, you can get away with it. Maybe you will have a well-trained dog or maybe you will…

Continue reading


Income inequality and determinants of health in the US

A series published in The Lancet recently investigated the effect of income inequality on the health of Americans. While incomes for those in the top have grown, extreme poverty has also grown in the US. In fact, more than 1.6 million households in the US survive on less than $2 per day; a number double that of the 1990s. The cycle is not likely to be broken either, barring major social change. Differences in aspects…

Continue reading


Major League Baseball Pitchers and “Stem Cell” therapy

Baseball pitching motion. Wikipedia With the Toronto Blue Jays* off to a terrible start, I was almost dissuaded from reading anything about baseball, until I happened upon the following article: “Stem-cell therapy is poised to disrupt the Tommy John epidemic in baseball.” First, I had to do my standard “fake news” check by triangulating the sources, readings, etc., but after a few minutes, it was clearly apparent that this was a legitimate thing…. Really? Yep.…

Continue reading


3 apps utiles pour mieux connaître et gérer la médication

La circulation d’informations médicales et la multiplication des applications mobile en santé peuvent représenter un véritable défi pour les patients et les proches à la recherche de renseignements fiables sur la médication et d’outils appropriés pour en faire une meilleure gestion. Utilisés à bon escient, internet et les applications mobiles peuvent constituer des ressources pertinentes pour une meilleure compréhension et prise en charge de sa médication, en  complémentarité avec les consultations et conseils d’un professionnel de la…

Continue reading


Le cerveau, ou l’histoire d’un organe pas comme les autres

Que dire dans une présentation générale sur le cerveau d’environ une heure comme celle que je m’apprête à faire mercredi prochain dans le cadre d’un cours de l’UPop Montréal gratuit et destiné au grand public ? Quel chemin choisir parmi les myriades qui s’offrent à nous ? Procéder par la négative, c’est-à-dire essayer de dire d’abord ce que le cerveau n’est pas, peut être une entrée en matière efficace qui s’attaque de front à certaines…

Continue reading