The Palmdoc Chronicles

Saturday, December 31, 2005

Apgar score

Spotted Apgar Score in I thought 370 Kb is a bit much for a single score calculator. Do note that Apgar score is included in the free highly rated Medcalc for PalmOS which has tons of other features.

Friday, December 30, 2005

Treo650 questions

SK from Harvard, MA writes:

I have to ask about your Treo 650. I'm pondering buying one of these. I have a separate PDA (Clie Sj22) and cellphone (Nokia 6010) presently.

My main concerns with the Treo are voice quality, system stabiltiy, and the number pad.

Is the cellphone function acceptable? Is the reception as good as a "typical" cellphone?

I hear these phones reset often. Is this your experience?

My biggest problem is using my cellphone, while on call, at night. I think the Treo 650 keypad must be tough to dial in the dark, with such small keys. I don't think the Treo allows voice activated calling either. How's your experience regarding these issues?

Hi SK. Thanks for writing in.
I must say overall I am very pleased with my Treo 650

First of all, the phone function is excellent. It's more than acceptable - the intuitive keypad and functions make the Treo650 an excellent phone. I did miss Profiles in my SEt610 but I found a freeware replacement. Some have complained about a soft Speaker phone but there is a third party software called Volumecare which is an excellent utility to address those facing volume issues (yeah, stop playing that iPod so often - it's damaging your hearing ;) )

As for your second question, yes i do experience occasional resets but with compatible apps loaded, resets are infrequent. Some apps are a little buggy and will cause a leak in the DBcache memory and resets are sometimes related to a depleted DBCache. There is a nifty freeware DBCache Tool which helps you keep an eye on this and improve stability. Some also use a freware utility called Resco Locker. Overall I find that my Treo650 is pretty stable. Some users have complained of slow-down and freezing when accessing the 'net when the GPRS signal is weak. I have occasionally encountered this and I don't know of a fix but Palm has been updating their firmware regularly to fix bugs and I think this will be overcome as well.

The Treo's keyboard is backlit. Using the phone at night is very easy and I have no problem using the keyboard.

Hope this helps in your decision!

Haemoncrules reloaded

OK, have managed to upload the update onto Palmgear.
Please visit the Haemoncrules Homepage for more info.
Don't forget to send me a postcard or better still donate to the Haemoncrules project!

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Epocrates Online Free

I received a "Holiday gift" from Epocrates reminding me that their Web-based Epocrates Online service is available for free (with some limitations in their free edition as compared with their Premium edition)
Ever since I moved on to the Treo650, I have had to drop Epocrates from my Handheld since their PDA apps do not support efficient use of external storage cards, resulting in consumption of precious Ram, something the Treo650 is short of.
It got me thinking, if Epocrates could provide a free Online service, why not make it PDA friendly? Something like the PDA version of UpToDate for subscribers. Many PDAs like the TX, Lifedrive as well as Smartphones like the Treo 600/650 have wireless access either through Wifi or GPRS/Edge.
So think about it, Epocrates, if you are not able to produce a Ram efficient PDA app, then perhaps you could make your Online version PDA friendly!

Mosby’s Drug Consult & Interactions 2006

Press release:

Skyscape Introduces “Mosby’s Drug Consult & Interactions 2006” for Handheld Devices

MARLBOROUGH, MASS. – December 28, 2005 – Skyscape, Inc., the leader in mobile health and medical information solutions, today announced the release of “Mosby’s Drug Consult & Interactions 2006” formatted specially for PDAs and smart phones.

“Mosby’s Drug Consult & Interactions 2006” provides convenient, take-anywhere access to current, unbiased, accurate, and reliable drug information. It contains approximately 1,000 generic drug entries and many more prescription drug products indexed by generic name, U.S. brand name, international brand name, indication, and drug class.

“‘Mosby’s Drug Consult & Interactions 2006’ is ideal for medical practitioners,” said Sandeep Shah, Skyscape founder and CEO. “Skyscape’s intuitive and easy-to-use interface, smARTlink™, provides practitioners with instant access to critical information at the point of care. This reference is a powerful decision support tool that helps in reducing errors and enhances the quality of patient care,” said Shah.

The reference is published by Mosby, an Elsevier Health Services Company, and joins Skyscape’s portfolio of more than 300 trusted references in over 35 medical specialties.

Practitioners can purchase the reference or download a free trial version by visiting

Skyscape provides Cochrane Reviews

Press Release:

Skyscape Announces Partnership to Provide 49 “Cochrane Reviews” Medical Reference Titles for PDAs

MARLBOROUGH, MASS., December 27, 2005 – Skyscape, Inc., the leader in mobile health and medical decision support solutions, today announced a partnership with John Wiley & Sons, Inc. to release its family of 49 “Cochrane Reviews” titles, formatted specially for use by Palm and PocketPC enabled PDAs and smart phones.

“Cochrane Reviews” explore the evidence for and against the effectiveness and appropriateness of treatments to provide the 'gold-standard' in high quality, reliable, evidence-based medical information. The partnership marks the first time “Cochrane Reviews” titles – which were previously only available as a volume set - will be available as individual titles formatted for mobile, point-of-care use by medical professionals.

"As evidence-based medicine is becoming the basis for effective clinical decisions which result in positive patient outcomes, it is increasingly important that systematically reviewed information is available for determining diagnostic tests, treatments, risk factors, screening programs, and other of disease management requirements. Our partnership with John Wiley & Sons, Inc. to provide the ‘Cochrane Reviews’ on PDAs and smartphones provides a critical path for medical practitioners to stay current with the latest evidence in their specialty," said Sandeep Shah, Skyscape Founder and CEO.

“With access to ‘Cochrane Reviews’ titles individually,” Shah continues, “medical professionals can choose which topics apply to their area of specialty and build a continually updated library of evidence on their PDA.”

“Cochrane Reviews” are part of The Cochrane Library published by John Wiley & Sons, Inc., and deliver the best available evidence-based medical information. Each review explores the evidence for and against the effectiveness and appropriateness of treatments (medications, surgery, education) in specific circumstances. With the new partnership, Skyscape will offer a full selection of “Cochrane Reviews”, including:

• Anesthesiology
• Cardiology
• Infectious Disease
• Oncology
• Pediatrics
• Public Health
• And more than 30 other areas of specialty

The “Cochrane Reviews” titles join Skyscape’s portfolio of more than 300 trusted references in over 35 medical specialties. Cochrane Reviews titles are available for $29.95 each at, where a free trial version is also available for download.

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Haemoncrules Christmas update

First of all a very Merry Christmas to all of you who are celebrating. Here's wishing you all peace and happiness on this blessed day.
I have taken the opportunity to update Haemoncrules - now version 2.0 with the addition of the MACIS Thyroid Ca. prognostic score (as requested by Vagus).
I am however in a place where I don't have broadband and where dialup really sucks and I can barely blog let alone upload files properly. So I'm afraid here's only a screenshot and the updated Haemoncrules will find it's way to Palmgear only after December 28:


Profiles for the Treo

Having switched to the Treo650 as my PDA/Phone convergence device, I must say that I haven't regretted the move and am enjoying the Treo everyday. There are a few things I miss though about the Treo as compared with my previous phone (a SonyEricsson T610). One of them is the ability to switch "profiles" easily - important say if you are at a meeting or conference and want your phone to stay silent and buzz only for calls or SMS messages.
Well I found an excellent add-on for the Treo 600/650 and its free. It's called Profiles and version 1.01 is superb. It allows you to setup multiple profiles with all sorts of parameters - not only the rings, buzzes but also cool things like the display, theme. I particularly like the ability to set the Radio state ON automatically for the profile in case you need to reset the Treo. You can also set a schedule for particular profiles to come on automatically at set times. Very cool.
I rate Profiles 5/5 and a must-have if you use a Treo!

Friday, December 16, 2005

Mobile Gmail

Good news for Mobile doctors. Google now officially supports mobile devices.
I tested it out on my Treo 650 and it works well using the Treo's Blazer browser.

Here's a screenshot:

New PDA titles

Some press releases:

Unbound: CURRENT CONSULT Medicine 2006
Unbound Medicine today released the all new 2006 edition of the CURRENT CONSULT Medicine (CCMed). From the authors and editors of Lange’s best-selling CURRENT Medical Diagnosis and Treatment, CURRENT CONSULT MEDICINE 2006 has all the latest information for rapid answers to the questions encountered in both hospital and outpatient care settings.

The integrated differential diagnosis tool, derived from Diagnosaurus, allows users to lookup a symptom such as cough or headache, obtain the differential diagnosis (DDx), and then link directly to specific diseases and treatments in CCMed. Additional features include:

* Practical answers on more than 850 disorders integrated with 550 differential diagnoses
* New topics—SARS, Parvovirus, and more!
* Tables optimized for PDA viewing
* Practice guidelines and specific doses

Skyscape Introduces “Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database 2006” for Handheld Devices

MARLBOROUGH, MASS. – December 15, 2005 – Skyscape, Inc., the leader in mobile health and medical information solutions, today announced the release of “Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database 2006” formatted specially for PDAs and smart phones.

“Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database 2006” is a practical source of evidence based data on the uses and safety of natural medicines like herbs, vitamins, minerals, and supplements. The easy to use database is recognized as the scientific gold-standard for evidence based information.

“‘Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database 2006’ is ideal for medical practitioners,” said Sandeep Shah, Skyscape founder and CEO. “Skyscape’s intuitive and easy-to-use interface, smARTlink™, provides practitioners with instant access to critical information at the point of care. This reference is a powerful decision support tool that helps in reducing errors and enhances the quality of patient care,” said Shah.

The reference is published by the Therapeutic Research Center, and joins Skyscape’s portfolio of more than 300 trusted references in over 35 medical specialties.

Practitioners can purchase the reference or download a free trial version by visiting

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Heart Doctor

Spottedin Palmgear, Heart Doctor is a new release by Island Coders

Application Description
Heart Doctor is a complete guide to the management of the ten most common heart problems afflicting man today. Discussions concerning the disease description, orders, diagnosis and therapeutics are presented in a most concise and comprehensive manner. Designed for physicians and patients, Heart Doctor acts as a quick reference to patient management. It covers Acute Myocardial Infarction, Unstable Angina, Congestive Heart Failure, Hypertensive Urgency & Emergency, Supraventricular Tachycardia, Atrial Fibrillation, Premature Ventricular Contractions, Premature Atrial Contractions, Infective Endocarditis (treatment) and Acute Rheumatoid Fever.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Upcoming plans

It's been a quiet week for Palm Medical computing so I'd just let you know what's up and coming my end. Vagus has written to ask me about a Palm program to calculate prognostic scores for Thyroid ca, so I told him I'd be happy to include one (MACIS) in the next version of Haemoncrules. I think I'll work on this during the Christmas break so hopefully the new version will be released in 2006.
A coleague has also broached the idea of converting a useful hand book called "Emergencies in Internal Medicine" written by Dr. Wong Yin Onn back in 1988. If things go as planned (the author has given his permission), then a bunch of us will update the sections, then we'll release it as a free ebook (probably in iSilo format).
Well, that's the plans for the coming months.
Happy Palming!

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Skyscape Expands Partnership with American College of Physicians

Press release:
MARLBOROUGH, Mass. – Dec. 5, 2005 – Skyscape Inc. and the American College of Physicians (ACP) today announce an expanded partnership to transition all subscribers from the ACP PDA version of the Physicians’ Information and Education Resource (PIER) to Skyscape’s mobile platform.

Under this agreement, all subscribers to the ACP version of the PIER PDA can upgrade to a free, one-year subscription for a special Skyscape bundle of PIER and AHFS Dosing Companion. This special bundle combines the best in evidence-based clinical guidance & drug dosing guidelines and includes rationale/evidence levels plus hundreds of images not previously included in the ACP PIER PDA version. In addition, Skyscape is offering special savings to all other ACP Members on PIER and hundreds of medicine's most trusted physician references for mobile devices. Click here for more information

“More of our members are using mobile devices as part of their daily practice, and this enhanced partnership will allow them to fully realize the usefulness of PIER’s evidence-based approach by providing seamless cross-indexing with their other Skyscape mobile references,” said ACP Executive Vice President and CEO John Tooker, MD, MBA, FACP. “Skyscape brings the technology, expertise and proven track record needed to meet our needs and the needs of our physician members. By providing immediate, cross-indexing capability with more than 300 other trusted medical
references, Skyscape has helped us bring even more functionality to PIER.”

Developed and continually updated by the ACP, PIER is a decision-support tool designed for rapid point-of-care delivery of evidence-based guidance for clinicians. PIER’s 400 disease-based modules present a series of guidance statements and practice recommendations, supported by more detailed levels of rationale and evidence.

“For decades the ACP has enhanced the quality and effectiveness of health care by fostering excellence and professionalism in the practice of medicine. Now, by making evidenced-based information accessible to doctors at point-of-care and using Skyscape’s smARTlink™ technology to integrate it with all other Skyscape products, the ACP is helping set a new standard in the use of evidenced-based medicine in daily practice,” said Sandeep Shah, president and CEO of Skyscape, Inc.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

PDAs help reduce unnecessary Rx

Mobilehealthdata reports:

A study of 334 physicians in rural Utah and Idaho found that a PDA-based clinical decision support system helped reduce the number of antibiotics prescribed for respiratory infections. The study took place in 2001-2003 and was funded by the Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Results were published in a recent edition of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Score another one for PDA usage at point-of-care!

5MCC mates with Diagnosaurus

Unbound Medicine has now integrated their 5-Minute Clinical Consult 2006 product with the free PDA differential diagnosis tool, Diagnosaurus

Diagnosaurus has been integrated with 5-Minute Clinical Consult 2006 to make this resource more powerful than ever! FREE with this version of 5-Minute Clinical Consult the popular Diagnosaurus contains differential diagnoses for more than 1,000 common presentations. This special Unbound Medicine package gives you direct links from presenting symptoms and differential diagnoses in Diagnosaurus right into 5MCC disease content.

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

A couple of Skyscape Press releases

Ferri's Clinical Advisor 2006 - Instant Diagnosis & Treatment" for Handheld Devices
MARLBOROUGH, MASSACHUSETTS, USA, November 29, 2005 – Skyscape, Inc., the leader in mobile health and medical information solutions, today announced the release of “Ferri's Clinical Advisor 2006 - Instant Diagnosis & Treatment” formatted specially for PDAs and smart phones.
“Ferri's Clinical Advisor 2006 - Instant Diagnosis & Treatment” is a fast, effective way to access important diagnostic and therapeutic information. The new edition features annual revisions for up-to-the minute patient care information, provides cost-effective referral and consultation guidelines, includes more than 200 lab tests with normal values and interpretation of results, incorporates the most common childhood diseases in the Diseases and Disorders section, provides billing codes, including ICD-9-CM codes to expedite insurance claims and reimbursements and much more.
“‘Ferri's Clinical Advisor 2006 - Instant Diagnosis & Treatment’ is ideal for internal medicine physicians,” said Sandeep Shah, Skyscape founder and CEO. “Skyscape’s intuitive and easy-to-use interface, smARTlink, provides practitioners with instant access to critical information at the point of care. This reference is a powerful decision support tool that helps in reducing errors and enhances the quality of patient care,” said Shah.
The reference is published by Mosby, an Elsevier Health Sciences Company, and joins Skyscape’s portfolio of more than 300 trusted references in over 35 medical specialties.
Practitioners can purchase the reference or download a free trial version by visiting

Skyscape Introduces "Lippincott Manual of Nursing Practice: Procedures," 2nd Ed. for Handheld Devices
MARLBOROUGH, MASSACHUSETTS, USA, Nov 29, 2005 – Skyscape, Inc., the leader in mobile health and medical information solutions, today announced the release of “Lippincott Manual of Nursing Practice: Procedures,” 2nd Ed. formatted specially for PDAs and smart phones.

Completely updated for its Second Edition, all of the procedures from the popular, standard-setting “Lippincott Manual of Nursing Practice: Procedures” are now available in a comprehensive reference for mobile devices. This resource provides step-by-step guidelines for more than 150 procedures in all areas of nursing practice and contains many color images.(Download photo at:
Content is organized by chapter/procedure number and alphabetically for quick access. Easy navigation features include searching capabilities by chapter or alphabetically. Cross-referencing enables users to find related procedures with just one tap of the stylus.
“‘Lippincott Manual of Nursing Practice: Procedures’ is ideal for nurses,” said Sandeep Shah, Skyscape founder and CEO. “Skyscape’s intuitive and easy-to-use interface, smARTlink, provides practitioners with instant access to critical information at the point of care. More than a reference, this is a powerful decision support tool that helps in reducing errors and enhances the quality of patient care,” said Shah.
The reference is published by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins and joins Skyscape’s portfolio of more than 300 trusted references in over 35 medical specialties.
Practitioners can purchase the reference or download a free trial version by visiting

Clinician’s PDA Project

The Children’s Hospital Boston is running a Clinician’s PDA Project whereby doctors are provided with PDAs in order to access information at the point of care. Excellent move. How I wish my hospital were so far sighted :P
Here's the story:

MARLBOROUGH, Mass. – Nov. 29, 2005 – Clinicians making their rounds at Children’s Hospital Boston are replacing charts, index cards, and heavy books with 6 1/2-ounce, handheld wireless computers that carry important patient information and mobile medical references from Skyscape, Inc., the leading provider of interactive mobile references for over 475,000 medical professionals.
While the stethoscope still remains an essential tool, the handheld computers (PDA) are ideal assistants for clinicians, who benefit from having access to real-time information and up-to-date medical references while making their rounds at the hospital, said Sandeep Shah, president and CEO of Skyscape.
The hospital-funded program, called “Clinician’s PDA Project,” was initiated in October 2004 with 150 clinicians each given wireless pocket PC devices. The key project objective was to give clinicians access to information when they want it, where they want it.
“When clinicians are at a patient’s bedside, they are benefiting from having immediate access to reference materials and quick reference guide books as well as laboratory results and any clinical data we have in-house,” says Alex Khayat, the hospital’s manager for architecture, standards and emerging technologies. “Now instead of waiting minutes to obtain the relevant patient information and decide on a
course of action, clinicians can access this information, as well as critical decision support references, directly at their fingertips, enabling faster, more informed decision making with fewer errors.”

After clinicians extensively reviewed references from various sources, Children’s Hospital decided on a core set of references that included three pediatric titles from Skyscape, the leading provider of trusted medical references for mobile and desktop devices. In addition, the Clinician’s PDA Project included software from many other vendors to round out the offering with Children’s Hospital specific formulary information and other clinical tools. The hospital worked very closely with the software vendors to bring their standards up to an enterprise-wide level to be able to automate, deploy, and manage very quickly and without user intervention.

I must point out that one of the most popular Pediatric references outside of North America is Frank Shann's Drug Doses. It's not available by Skyscape yet (hint hint) but there is a PDA version out already.
I blogged about it earlier this year in Frank Shann's Drugdoses for PDA

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

PalmPDF updated yet again

I am glad to report that the author of PalmPDF is continuing to develop and improve on PalmPDF. This is good news for those of us who like to read their journal articles on their PDAs!

0.7 (11/23/05, "Thanksgiving update")
- bug fix regarding UDMH and FtrPtrNew
- bug fix on Zire72
- bug fix with SnapperMail PDF attachment
- Updated GUI
- JogDial support on TH55
- Low-Res support
- added 65%, 85% and 95% as additional zoom factor
- remembers last scroll values for last visited document
- Basic rotation support using the 1st hard key (Function on Zodiac)
- smaller scroll values when using the 5-way for scrolling (better readable)

0.8 (11/26/05 "postponed Thangsgiving update")
- Basic memory manager to avoid fragmentation, might bring better performance on some devices
- Better installation, all fonts inside the app and extracted at first run
- ARMlet (1.2 MB) can be moved to memory card, leading around 38 kB PRC in main memory
to handle attachments and receive PDF files
- Beam/Send for PDF files
- Presentation mode, sends rendered pages as jpeg to any BT device (using Object Exchange)
together with a Bluetooth Media Adapter (BT->TV) you get a great presentation combo

I tried it out again and I can report a vast improvement over the earlier version. Now the zoom works faster and the Treo650's Dpad controls the movement around the document nicely. It still needs a fair amount of resources (cache memory) free.


Monday, November 28, 2005

Efficient Time Management with your PDA

Busy doctor? Don't know how to juggle so many appointments and procedures?
Let your PDA help you!

Time management with PDAs looks like a good place to get tips on how best to optimise the limited hours you have each day....
Great site Bruce. And indeed my prayers go to you and Vickie Lynn.

via Spinosum in the MMR IT Forums

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Clinical Cardiology 2007

Pacific Primary Care has released Clinical Cardiology 2007. I am amused that they have come out with a 2007 version when it is not even 2006.
I guess that's called "staying ahead of the competition"!

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Pedia Dosage Guide

IslandCoders have come up with Pedia Dosage Guide 1.0

Summary: A collection of pediatric medications with recommended doses and its preparations. Presented with a dosage calculator that will help clinicians in administering medications.

Blogroll update

Added TreoTodaywhich looks like a great Treo blog. Comes from a fellow countryman too ;) Ever dropped your PDA or smartphone in a toilet bowl? AJ did, and discovered 10 Things I can’t do without my Treo. The happy ending is the Treo650 survived the encounter with the toilet bowl!
I suggest those of you who like to read in the toilet with your Palm, please get eGrips!

Monday, November 21, 2005

Rumours of the next Treo again

Mobileread reports the following speculated time table:

* January 2006: Treo 700w (WM 5.0, ED-VO) exclusively from Verizon
* January 2006: Treo 700p (Palm OS) exclusively from Sprint
* March-May 2006: "Hollywood" - fancier 3G/GSM smartphone without external antenna to appeal to European customers; in US likely to be launched by Cingular
* March-May 2006: "Lowrider" - a sub-$300 device and entry-level PDA, compatible to previous-generation network radios

Well hurray for Hollywood! Looks like that'll be the Treo upgrade I am looking forward to!



I have been approached to develop a standalone version of the Myelodysplastic Syndrome International Prognostic Scoring System for the Palm. You might be aware there is already an IPSS module in Haemoncrules but this one is more elaborate and the interface has been redesigned a bit.

The item heading is now separate from the drop down box. You do not have to hit "Calc" as the values are filled in automatically once you have selected the required three variables.

A new feature is the addition of Survival Curves and AML Progression curves. Hitting on the Graph button after generating the score will take you to the appropriate image.

I actually found this IPSS program useful when I was discussing management plans with a patient of mine who has MDS. She wanted to know her prognosis and whether or not allogeneic stem cell transplantation was appropriate for her at this point in time.
I whipped out my Treo650 and tapped out her IPSS score and showed her the survival curve appropriate for her score. I think she and her husband were impressed ;)

Anyway, this program will be free and available to ASH attendees in Atlanta this year if they visit the Pharmion booth.

Friday, November 18, 2005

CME Watch

CME Watch has been updated in
This application enables you to keep track of your CME Hours on your Palm.
Update Description:
- Adds Certifications Manager
- Adds Alphabetical/Date Chooser/List
- Adds Filtering Options
- Categorize by Type and Event

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Health Assessment Through the Life Span

Skyscape Introduces Health Assessment Through the Life Span, 4th Ed. Bundle for Handheld Devices

MARLBOROUGH, MASSACHUSETTS, USA, November 16, 2005 Skyscape, Inc., the leader in mobile health and medical information solutions, today announced the release of Health Assessment Through the Life Span, 4th Ed. formatted specially for PDAs and smart phones. The reference is published by F.A. Davis and joins Skyscape's portfolio of more than 300 trusted references in over 35 medical specialties.

Health Assessment Through the Life Span, 4th Ed. is ideal for nurses to review condensed coverage of health assessment, said Sandeep Shah, Skyscape founder and CEO. Its intuitive and easy-to-use interface, smARTlink, provides practitioners with instant access to critical information at the point of care. More than a reference, Skyscape's Health Assessment Through the Life Span, 4th Ed. is a powerful decision support tool that eliminates errors and enhances the quality of patient care said Shah.

This information-packed, easy-to-use pocket guide serves both as a reference for nurses working in clinical settings and as a student text for programs that offer condensed coverage of health assessment. Organized by body systems, the focus of this updated edition remains on assessing, documenting, and reporting the current status and changes in the condition of patients for all age groups.

Key Features
- Added focus on pain assessment and documentation, which is now required by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Health Care Organizations (JCAHO).
- Expanded coverage of dental history and problems, obesity and diabetes, assessment of mental symptoms and behavior, and abuse and/or neglect.
- Additional color figures further illustrate procedures. Tables and appendices are revised and updated.
- More pediatric coverage on breast development for children, abuse, and asthma.
- More geriatric coverage on assessing edema, circulation and skin problems, nutritional needs, medications, and vitamins.
- Focuses on health promotion and wellness, community resources, payment mechanisms, specialized communication techniques based on age, ethnicity, and culture, and the use of alternative and complementary therapies.
- Clinical alert sections detail, in color, special instructions for assessments or concerns related to findings.

Practitioners can purchase the reference or download a free trial version by visiting Skyscape

21 CFR Handheld

Press release:

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va and ALBERTSLUND, Denmark, November 16, 2005
Today, Unbound Medicine, the leading provider of authoritative information designed for mobile professionals, and Tarius, the leading provider of global regulatory and compliance information for the pharmaceutical industry, announced the release of 21 CFR Handheld. Mobile regulatory professionals can now consult the complete Title 21 of the Code of the Federal Regulations (CFR) as well as Federal Register updates from any location using either a personal digital assistant (PDA) or a wireless device such as BlackBerry, Treo, or a Smartphone.

Regulatory and quality assurance professionals frequently consult current and relevant regulatory information to guide their decision making. Traditionally, these professionals carry a book of regulations with them and add notes manually whenever a change occurs. The book itself is only updated annually, so they must check regularly for updates and rely on their own notes in order to remain current.

For 21 CFR Handheld, Tarius inserts links that connect the user to amendments within hours of the daily release of new information by the U.S. Government Printing Office. Unbound Medicine’s unique platform delivers this daily update to 21 CFR Handheld users, either through PDA synchronization or over the Internet to a wireless device. Now regulatory professionals can always have the most up-to-date information in an integrated and portable format. .

“On-the-go pharmaceutical and regulatory professionals who need fast, authoritative answers to the constantly changing regulations that govern human drugs, biologics and medical devices will now be able to check the complete 21 CFR from any location, “ said Bill Detmer, MD, President and CEO of Unbound Medicine. “We are proud to partner with Tarius to serve this segment of the healthcare market, given their global reputation as a source of high quality information.”

“Unbound Medicine’s strength in information architecture and their versatile technology are a perfect complement to our capabilities at Tarius,” said Nina Lindholst, Vice President of Tarius. “Now our users can carry the essential 21 CFR in their pockets—complete with bi-directional links to the latest amendments.”

For more information about 21 CFR Handheld visit Unbound Medicine's Online Catalog or CFR Handheld Website.

Monday, November 14, 2005

Egrips review

Ever worry you might drop your PDA or smartphone whilst busy at work or rounding and trying to do three things at once?
Well, ever since I got my treo650, it has been a concern of mine, as the Treo is a slippery little thing in my hands.
Fear no more, as you can get peace of mind if you install non-stick decals: Egrips on your device.
I wrote a little Egrips Review which you might be interested to read.


Sunday, November 13, 2005

Blogroll update

Finally got round to updating my Palm blogroll - this is a list of Palm and Palm related Blogs I visit. I have removed the defunct ones but left the rest which work, even if some haven't been updated in a while.
My numero uno fav is Palmaddicts which is great for the very latest news. You literally have to check it several times a day or else you might miss something!
I have added two new blogs:
Maceyr's palm discovery

Pocket Guide Breast Cancer Drugs

Skyscape has released Pocket Guide Breast Cancer Drugs 8.0.3 in Palmgear

The Pocket Guide to Breast Cancer Drugs provides ready access to the essentials of breast cancer management, including information on prevention and screening, staging, and treatment regimens. Pertinent information for 26 cancer drugs is comprehensively covered, from dosage and preparation to administration and interventions for potential side effects. The inclusion of patient education points for each drug simplifies your patient teaching. A must-have companion resource for oncology nurses!

Friday, November 11, 2005

Docs2Go now supports Native PDF

Palminfocenter reports that Docs To Go v8 Released with Native PDF Support
Great news for the Palm PDA toting doctors who like to read PDFs like journal articles on the go.

Related post:
PDF Readers for Palm roundup

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Another mobile Google

Via PalmAddicts: Apart from searching the net using Google PDA, you can also go to Google XHTML which has more features including a Mobile Web search.

More Free Stuff

Chris Helopoulos has written an article in, entitled More Free Stuff.
It's a good round-up of recent freebies for your PDA.
I have to mention he missed out Haemoncrules :P but I guess it's not new ;)

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

PalmPDF updated

Further to my mini-PDF Readers for Palm roundup, you might be interested to know that PalmPDF has now been updated to version 0.5
0.5 11/01/05
- Resets auto off timer
- doesn't disable power key (only happened on some devices)
- icon with transparent bg
- scroll bars added, only as info not for navigation
- Finally: landscape support
- directory on memory card is registered for .pdf (Hotsync)
- PalmPDF is registered as receiver for .pdf files over BT or IR (file transfer)
- Zoom select popup menu, Page select popup window
- TrueType support

Thanks to Palmaddicts for the headsup

Pocket Guide to Colorectal Cancer Drugs

Press release:
Skyscape Introduces Pocket Guide to Colorectal Cancer Drugs and Treatment for
Handheld Devices

MARLBOROUGH, MASS. – November 07, 2005 – Skyscape, Inc., the leader in trusted mobile
health and medical information solutions, today announced the release of an important
Oncology reference – Pocket Guide to Colorectal Cancer Drugs and Treatment – formatted
specially for use by healthcare providers on PDAs and smart phones.

Published by Jones and Bartlett Publishers, Pocket Guide to Colorectal Cancer Drugs and
Treatment is authored by Gail M. Wilkes, RNC, MS, AOCN, Boston Medical Center. This
reference reviews the current status of the management of colon and rectal cancers,
including: a review of the incidence, epidemiology, and trends; staging and primary surgical
management; adjuvant therapy; and treatment of advanced disease. In addition, specific
information about each of the chemotherapeutic agents used in systemic treatment as
adjuvant therapy of treatment of advanced disease is presented for both the nurse and
patient/family. The reference is easy to navigate and includes a brief overview of colorectal
cancer and patient education information for each of the drugs. A must-have companion
resource for oncology nurses!

Monday, November 07, 2005

A new Treo user

DrTony's got a new Treo650. Welcome to the convergence club ;)
I would have thought 23 MB is too little and that kept me from getting a Treo650 for some time. But with Zlauncher and moving files to SD card, it's tolerable - except that I have had to forgo Epocrates on the Treo650 (I have since installed it on my Dell Axim x50v which also runs UpToDate; but most of the time I rely on the Treo650 for everyday referencing)
It's good to hear of forthcoming Treo models - next year. I look forward to 64-128MB Ram, 3G support, a better camera and perhaps Wifi drivers please, Palm?

Using a PDA as a Medical Education Aid

I have been using the Treo650 and it's built-in camera as a simple patient education device. The camera may be only 1 MP but the pictures are reasonably sharp and the video is not too bad.
You may often need to explain to patients certain procedures and pictures and videos tell much more than words.
I think it is impressive if you whip out your PDA and play a short video clip or demo some pictures to aid in your explanation
Check out this little clip I took of a PICC using my Treo650:

The video is hosted on YouTube which seems to be a great place to upload and it makes it easy host your videos on your webpage or blog. Just click on the large play button and you are good to go.
Slashdot calls it the Flickr of Video and rightly so I think!

Doctors better be careful, your video may be surreptitiously shot by patients! e.g. in this one "My Gynae". Perhaps cameraphones should now be banned from the doctor's office? :P
Some medical student (apparently who also owns a Palm for sale - a Tungsten T on eBay)with too much time on her hands also came up with "Scandalous Student Doctors" ;)

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Skyscape connects you to Avian Flu

With the number of avian-flu cases in birds with the deadly H5N1 strain rising daily, health officials are warning of a possible pandemic in humans and world leaders are urging drug companies to speed development of a vaccine.

To help ensure you stay up-to-date with important developments on avian influenza, Skyscape has updated their FREE .911™ Resource (download .911 now) to incorporate the latest information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and World Health Organization (WHO) on the viruses, recent outbreaks and the risks to human health.

Move over iPods, here comes the HeartPod

Interesting story from Gizmodo

If you are looking for old Handspring Visors, then you're out of luck as someone has bought them all!
"So they bought up every last Handspring Visor from the junkyard they could find and slapped their software onto them. The result is the HeartPOD, a system designed to help monitor the patient via a sensor implated into the heart and an old-skool Palm"

Cool. Via PalmAddicts

Google Print

I think all this hullaballo about copyright issues and Google's new Print Search service is overblown.
I just took a look at what they have indexed and it is incredible. Just search for Stem Cell Transplant for instance and I'm amazed at the many titles it turns out.
Publishers and authors need not fear Google Print. In fact I think Google Print will do them a favor instead and help readers locate their books more easily.
I like Google services - their pages are so PDA friendly and you could search wirelessly right from your Palm literally.
Kudos to Google for yet another innovative idea.

Friday, November 04, 2005

More Oxford Titles

Skyscape has released a couple of updated Oxford titles:

Oxford Handbook of Acute Medicine, 2nd Ed.
Published by Oxford University Press Oxford Handbook of Acute Medicine is authored by Punit Ramrakha and Kevin Moore. The Oxford Handbook of Acute Medicine is an up-to-date, practical and comprehensive guide to the management of the acutely ill patient. The reference relates pathophysiology to clinical features to help the reader make the diagnosis quickly. It identifies priorities for treatment and leads the reader, step-by-step, through the management of the patient while awaiting specialist help. Wherever possible, published guidelines have been incorporated to ensure that the reference reflects current, recommended management of medical emergencies, with evidence-based treatments. Details of specialist treatments are included to inform readers about the patient's likely ongoing care.

Oxford Handbook of Accident and Emergency Medicine, 2nd Ed.
Published by Oxford University Press Oxford Handbook of Accident and Emergency Medicine is authored by Jonathan Wyatt, Robin Illingworth, Michael Clancy, Phillip T Munro, and Colin Robertson. This popular Handbook provides practical, accessible guidelines on a huge range of situations that present to the A & E department, and is the essential guide for junior doctors (including candidates for examinations in Accident and Emergency Medicine), specialist nurses, paramedics, and general practitioners. The text is deliberately precise and prescriptive. It gives up-to-date step-by-step advice on presentation, investigation, diagnosis, emergency treatment and further referral for adult and pediatrics patients, important practical procedures are covered in stepwise, easy-to-follow format with line diagrams illustrating anatomical landmarks.

Looks like these two titles are worthy additions particularly for an ER Doc's PDA reference collection.

Current Essentials of Medicine, 3rd edition

Unbound medicine has announced the release of Current Essentials of Medicine, 3rd edition

From the popular Lange series! Current Essentials of Medicine is optimized for mobile devices to bring you concise diagnosis and treatment for more than 500 medical disorders. Sharpen your clinical acumen with the Pearl included for every disorder! Completely updated throughout, this quick reference is perfect for medical students, residents, physicians, nurse practitioners, and physician assistants. New to this edition! Updated treatment recommendations. Expanded coverage of infectious diseases. Up-to-date references throughout.

Skyscape Introduces Oxford Handbook of Psychiatry for Handheld Devices

Press release:

MARLBOROUGH, MASS. – November 03, 2005 – Skyscape, Inc., the leader in trusted mobile health and medical information solutions, today announced the release of an important Psychiatry reference – Oxford Handbook of Psychiatry – formatted specially for use by healthcare providers on PDAs and smart phones.

Published by Oxford University Press, Oxford Handbook of Psychiatry is authored by David Semple, Roger Smyth, Rajan Darjee, and Andrew McIntosh. The Oxford Handbook of Psychiatry is a new reference directed at medical students, doctors coming to psychiatry for the first time, psychiatric trainees, and other professionals who may have to deal with patients with psychiatric problems. It is written by a group of experienced psychiatrists and is designed to provide easy access to the information required by psychiatry trainees on the wards or on-call. It closely follows the familiar format of the Oxford Handbooks series, and provides coverage that is comprehensive, evidence based and practical. The content of the handbook is written in the concise, note-based style characteristic of the series.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Need mobile email? It's here already

Leo of laments that he needs Mobile Email. I thought we have had it all along, and no we don't really need Blackberries everywhere.
I'm just back on vacation where broadband does not exist yet I could check my email with my Treo650. I use the default Versamail which supports POP and IMAP. You can actually schedule the Versamail client to check the mail at defined intervals (eg half hourly or hourly) and set it to collect only the headers and limit the size of data transfer (important if you are not on an unlimited data plan). For truly "push email" you can also use Chatopus (PalmOS only) - I don't need my email to follow me around that closely thank you!

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Mobile blogging

Spotted u*Blog at Palmaddicts, a free blogging tool which works with Blogger and indeed any blog which supports RPC2.
I must say it works great and is very easy to use with my Treo650. Now I can jot notes on my Treo650 and upload directly into my blogs. Neat!

Friday, October 28, 2005

RSS feeds in my Treo650

I am an RSS Junkie. Yup, can't do without my daily fix of News and websites. I'm not that addicted though, since once a day updates are enough for me and I don't need hourly RSS updates. There are more and more Medical RSS friendly sites and you can even get Journal feeds as blogged earlier. Pubmed realises this and they now support RSS feeds of search results.
My tools are:
Sunrise (now Opensource) to fetch the RSS feeds and webpages
Plucker - the reader of choice on my Treo650 (I also use iSilo for ebooks but the RSS support with iSiloX is not as good)

I miss the T5's drive mode (and indeed TX users may also miss this) but third party apps do fill in this gap nicely:
Softick Card Export II
Free alternative to Card Export II: Palm File Browser

With Card Export II I can map my Treo650's SD as a removeable Drive (labelled T on my System naturally!). I have a simple batch file which does a Copy *.pdb /Y over to the SD card's Palm/Programs/Plucker directory and after Sunrise does the conversion. One simple click and that's it!

PocketPC users are not left out: there is a free equivalent of Plucker for the PPC: Vademecum. It's not bad, just that it does not have the one-handed friendliness of the Palm version (then again what PocketPC does? :P ). The other downside of Pocket PCs is that you can't map the SD card as a "Drive" so anything you want to stuff into the card, you have to use Explorer and click on the Mobile Device and drill down to the folder of your choice before copying the files over. I don't know of an automated process to simplify this but if anyone does, please enlighten me!

Thursday, October 27, 2005

ICDMeister 2006

MeisterMed has updated ICDMeister in Palmgear
Application Description
ICDMeister is not just a list of codes. Added features make it easy to find exactly the code you need in seconds.
Most Common Diagnoses lists in every section bring 95% of the codes you're looking for within four quick clicks. The Abbreviations and Shortcuts Index is another way to quickly find your code. AGE? STD? Cdiff? FTT? TOA? ARDS? The abbreviations index quickly links you from the common medical acronym to the code you need.
Using the built in Search tool helps you find rare and common diagnoses quickly. Need the code for Sequoiosis (a type of allergic alveolitis)? Enter "sequo" in the search screen and find it in 2 seconds. Fibroids? Enter "fibroid" and instantly get to the four codes for fibroids.
ICDMeister is the best ICD-9 coding tool available for the PDA. Hey, don't take our word for it. Try all the other ones out there first and see for yourself.
ICDMeister requires the iSilo document reader which is sold separately.
Because ICD-9 codes are updated annually, this application is set to expire on 02/01/2007 in order to remind you to update to a current version. If you prefer to continue using the 2006 version, a non-expiring version will be provided to you at no additional cost.
Updated Description:
Fully updated for the 2006 ICD-9 coding changes

Manual of I.V. Therapeutics, 4th Ed.

Skyscape has also just released Manual of I.V. Therapeutics, 4th Ed. in Palmgear
Manual of I.V. Therapeutics, 4th Edition, is a self-paced reference designed to help the student, novice, or advanced practitioner in any setting where infusion-related skills are necessary. This new edition continues to emphasize standards of practice using the guidelines of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), Intravenous Nursing Society (INS) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

HIV Medicine 2005 and PDF reader roundup

You might be interested in a new free textbook : HIV Medicine 2005.
The ebook is in PDF format and 5.1MB in size. If you want to carry it in your PDA you need a reader which supports the PDF format.

Here's a roundup of PDF viewers available to PalmOS users:
Adobe's offering: Acrobat Reader for Palm is somewhat clunky. While free, you need to convert it to a format for Palm. No native PDF support (though the Pocket PC version by Adobe supports native PDF capability so I don't understand why Adobe hasn't done the same for Palm).
Repligo - one of the best out there. Still needs a conversion but the end product retains excellent formatting of the original PDF. The free reader has an excellent interface and is easy to use. The conversion tool however, is not free, but is modestly priced at $29.95.
Global Graphics (formally Ansyr). I did try out the Ansyr PDF viewer sometime back - like Repligo, it also needs a conversion but the end product was not too bad. I thought then it was a bit slower than Repligo and had less features. I haven't tried it of late. In any case I can't find the Palm version in the new website so I presume it's now dead.
Picsel Viewer : excellent document viewer which does Native PDF too. No version officially released for sale/distribution but a "hacked" version which can be installed on your Tungsten or Treo has been circulating around. I understand it will be available as a bundle for the Treo700w so I hope it will be a bundle for future Treos including the Treo700p.
Dataviz's Documents2Go: at the moment only text-based support in their Premium Edition but they are supposed to have demo'd Native PDF support so hopefully that will be released soon.
PalmPDF which is in early development, looks promising. I tried out version 0.4 on my T3 and it can open native PDFs but the zoom is slow and the interface needs a bit of work. Still it's promising and I hope the developer will plug on.

There you go. PDF viewer round-up for 2005. If you have anything to add, please feel free to comment.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

UCLA trials real-time access to patient data on mobiles

From MobileVillage

UCLA Medical Center is piloting a mobile, wireless patient information retrieval system that gives physicians instant access from throughout the hospital and around the world to real-time patient data via wireless PDAs and cellular smart phones.

The Global Care Quest system, or GCQ, integrates with digital medical records, bedside charting and laboratory results. This software offers access to real-time data from bedside ICU monitors, as well as X-ray and CT/MRI scan imaging studies, on Palm OS and Pocket PC (Windows Mobile) PDAs, smart phones, tablet PCs, and Windows-based desktops.
Physicians can access medical data throughout the medical center via the hospital's wireless network (Wi-Fi or 802.11b), and remotely, outside the hospital, through high-speed cellular network connections (1xRTT, EV-DO, EDGE).

Sounds like a dream system!

Animal (and Human) Blood Values

Vets are not forgotten in the PalmOS world ;)
Animal Blood Values 1.0 has been released in Palmgear

Application Description
Animal Blood Values (ABV) presents laboratory reference data of blood for 46 species of animals, ranging from the domestic to the wild, from the most common to the most exotic. Entries under Hematology and Clinical Chemistry (categories), are itemized for the dog, cat, horse, cattle, sheep, goat, swine, baboon, rhesus, ferret, gerbil, guinea pig, hamster, mouse, rat, rabbit, African grey parrot, amazon parrot, broiler chicken, budgerigar, caique, canary, cockatiel, cockatoo, conure, dove, duck, eagle, emu, hawk, lorry, lovebird, macaw, mynah, ostrich, parakeet, parrotlet, pionus, rosella, swan, toucan, boa, iguana, monitor lizard, python and turtle box. Hematology has 17 parameters each showing the minimum and maximum of the blood’s components. Clinical Chemistry, in turn, has 25 parameters, detailing values for electrolytes to lipids to enzymes. Values for both categories may be examined singly or dually. Actual laboratory results (whenever available) may be compared to that of the Database and ABV’s Evaluate will help assess normality. ABV’s Database can be edited. Also, the busy practitioner is provided with a short glossary of terms as reminder. A unit converter will facilitate change from the conventional notation of data to the SI unit or vice versa. Animal Blood Values (ABV) is for veterinarians, veterinary technicians, vet students, zoo technical personnel, pet owners, medical students and research personnel working in laboratories using animals as test units. All these will prove ABV to be a ready source of reliable reference data. Animal Blood Values is a designer program published in the Palm OS platform, running under OS 3.5 and higher.

IslandCoders thankfully have not forgotten us humans and have released
Human Normal Values 1.0.0
Application Description
Human Normal Values (HNV) is a snap guide to normal laboratory values for man. Reference data are extensively presented and grouped into 11 categories namely, Hematology, Electrolyte, Hepatic Enzymes, Renal Values, Protein, Lipids, Thyroid, Cardiac, Urinalysis, Stool, Diabetes, Pancreas, Arterial Blood Gas (ABG) and Hepatitis Panel. Within its category are sub-categories, each containing reference values for commonly used laboratory test routines. As guide to better understanding of data, a Differential Diagnosis in a very concise form is included. Human Normal Values is for medical students and medical doctors (physicians), students and practitioners in allied medical sciences as nursing, medical technology, physical and occupational therapy. Veterinarians and veterinary technicians may even find HNV as a source of comparative data. The very busy medical doctors and consultants will find a ready ally in HNV as an ever ready supplier of reference data.

I believe these products are Islandcoders first foray into the Palm Medical arena. Their products seem to be competitively priced too.

Palm Treo 650 Smartphones to Collect and Wirelessly Transmit Subject Data in Clinical Trials

Palm, Inc. (Nasdaq:PALM) today announced that PHT Corporation, one of its leading clinical trials customers, is using 1,500 Palm(R) Treo(TM) 650 smartphones to collect and wirelessly transmit(1) self-reported data from subjects using PHT's customized LogPad(R) application in clinical trials across the globe. PHT plans to roll out the initial set of smartphones over a six-month period for use during a series of clinical trials.

Today's announcement puts PHT, which has deployed more than 20,000 Palm handheld devices in the past two years, at the forefront of smartphone use in clinical research. More than 70 biopharmaceutical and medical device companies, including 13 of the top 15 drug-development firms in the world, use PHT's market-leading electronic patient reported outcome (ePRO) solutions in more than 180 clinical studies worldwide.

Recently, PHT deployed Treo 650 smartphones for use by asthma patients in the AIR2 clinical trial sponsored by Asthmatx, an innovative medical device manufacturer located in Mountain View, Calif. Asthmatx is the developer of the Alair System(R), which consists of a single-use device and a controller that delivers radiofrequency energy during an outpatient bronchoscopic procedure known as Bronchial Thermoplasty(TM). In this pivotal clinical trial designed to establish the safety and efficacy of the Alair System for the treatment of asthma, a subset of patients will use Treo 650 smartphones to record daily information about their asthma symptoms. Patients using the Treo smartphone will use the device each morning and evening to record their asthma symptoms, medication use and the impact of their asthma on daily life during the clinical trial. The stored data is then automatically transmitted wirelessly to a secure central server. Researchers review the subject data over the web in real time, using PHT's StudyWorks application to track and manage subject enrollment, diary-completion compliance and subject safety information. PHT's LogPad application, implemented on the Treo 650 smartphones, features body diagrams, visual analog scales and other graphical data-collection screens that are intuitive and convenient for subjects to use.

Via PalmAddicts, Mobilehealthdata

Hmmm. I wonder if the subjects get to keep the Treo650s? ;)

Another Native PDF viewer

Still waiting for Dataviz to deliver their Native PDF viewer?
Not able to install the "hacked" Picsel Viewer?
Well, the good news is that PalmPDF is now in development too and you can try an early version and support the author with a donation if you like it.

Via Palmaddicts

Tuesday, October 25, 2005


Bill Lefkowitz has posted Neobassinette v2.0 in
Neobassinette is an improved NICU rounding tool and database.
Included are places to record vitals, fluids and TPN data, blood gasses, labs and meds.
nbCommon calculations are made based on raw data (volumes (cc/kg/hr and cc/kg/day) including estimates of insensible losses and total including and excluding blood products and boluses, Kcal/kg/day from each intake fluid, GIR from multiple dextrose concentration drips, Meq/kg/day of Na+ from multiple saline containing drips, OI, aA gradient, aA ratio, VI, oxygen content in blood, bound to Hb and dissolved per dL of plasma, calculated serum osm, anion gap, ANC, I:T ratio, doses/kg/day divided into number of doses/day, number of hours of age given birth date and time and an end date and time, number of days on a medicine given the starting date, rule of 6,60,120 for epi, dopa and dobut, and common prostin mix for wt.)
Also included is a to-do list for dated and timed tasks that you can review by \"completed\" \"to do in next 24 hrs\" \"overdue\" etc.
Days of life and post-menstrual age are also calculated.
This program was designed to speed data collection on rounds customized to my NICU and bedside forms, as well as handy quick-check calculations for use in teaching residents.
Please let me know if you find any bugs or find anything you'd like customized.
Requires the beta version of HanDBase 3.49b6 for the name to show up on all sub-forms.
Developed on the Sony Clie NR70v.

Great job, Bill!
Visit Bill's homepage

Monday, October 24, 2005

Block those annoying Pop-ups is an excellent place to go for free PalmOS software. I don't mind the ads in the main page but I do hate Popups. If you are a Firefox user, even checking the Block Popup option does not stop the pesky Popups in this particular site.
Well TheOfficeWeblog comes to the rescue (I spotted this great tip in PalmAddicts btw)

”It turns out that some clever people figured out that you could launch popups from Flash, getting around the Firefox default settings.

Fortunately, you can get around it:

1. Type about:config into the Firefox location bar.
2. Right-click on the page and select New and then Integer.
3. Name it privacy.popups.disable_from_plugins
4. Set the value to 2.

The possible values are:

* 0: Allow all popups from plugins.
* 1: Allow popups, but limit them to dom.popup_maximum.
* 2: Block popups from plugins.
* 3: Block popups from plugins, even on whitelisted sites.”

I haven’t seen a single popup since adding this to my configuration page.

New Skyscape titles

A couple of new releases you might be interested in:

Diseases of the Human Body, 4th Ed
The new edition of this classic text continues to offer students an excellent resource for learning common medical conditions. To help students locate specific information on more than 350 diseases, each condition is presented in an easy to follow format and includes description, etiology, signs and symptoms, diagnostic procedures, treatment, prognosis, and prevention.

Pocket Guide to Chemotherapy Protocols, 2nd Edition

The Pocket Guide to Chemotherapy Protocols, Second Edition serves as a handy, quick reference for physicians, nurses, and other health care providers treating cancer patients. Completely revised and updated in this new edition, the Pocket Guide contains combination as well as selected single-agent regimens for solid tumors and hematologic malignancies. In each case, the regimens selected are based on the published literature and are used in clinical practice in the medical oncology community. An indispensable quick-reference resource for all cancer care professionals.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Nurses to Get Free PDA Software

MobileHealthData reports that The American College of Nurse Practitioners will give its members complimentary access to hand-held clinical reference software from Thomson Micromedex, Denver. Read the full article here

Friday, October 21, 2005

It's a handheld world

Jennifer Chappel finally discovers that many doctors are avid PDA users and blogs this experience in Palmaddicts - Palmaddicts is an excellent source of daily news and views for the Palm enthusiast.
One of the recent gems posted is that you can get a huge $30 discount off Agendus Pro if you use a discount code posted here. Agendus Pro for 9.95 - what are you waiting for!

LibertyControl Review

I have recently been given the opportunity to evalute LibertyControl, a Bluetooth remote control software for your Notebook computer. I would think many Doctors and Healthcare professionals would appreciate the ability to control their Powerpoint presentations from afar (well up to 10 feet anyway!) and not be "tied down" to the podium. Imagine being given the freedom to move around the stage and magically controlling the presentation using your Treo 650 smartphone or Tungsten PDA/Lifedrive!

What follows is just a summary review. If you like, you could also read the Full Review

I found installation and running LibertyControl a breeze on my WinXP Pro NEC Notebook, Billionton USB dongle and Treo650.
Your first of all have to copy the Powerpoint presentation over to C:\Program Files\Wagware\LibertyControl\Shared\Presentations. Using the LibertyControl Slide Manager, you can then add Notes to your presentation which will be displayed on your PDA. Very handy indeed as prompts for your talk. If you already have Notes in your Powerpoint presentation, these will be loaded in the LibertyControl Palm application.
The cool thing is you can set Timers for your slides so that you have an on-screen count-down clock in your PDA which tells you how much time you have left allocated for the slide, and you also get an optional flashing alarm on your PDA when the count-down is over. There is also an overall timer to tell you how long your talk has taken so far. This is very useful for those of us who give presentations in meetings where there is a time restriction.
Now the fun part. Just fire up the LibertyControl app on your Palm. Hit the Presentation button on the Palm, and you’ll be prompted to connect with the paired Bluetooth device (in this case my NEC notebook).

loadSubsequently when you tap on the Presentation Manager, you’ll see a list of Presentations available to you (the ones you put in the Liberty Shared folder). Just tap on your choice and the notebook will magically load PowerPoint and run your presentation.
Controlling the slides is a cinch. The DPad buttons allow you to navigate forward and backwards from slide to slide. There is also a handy Home button to start from the beginning. To add even more versatility, you could even switch to Mouse mode, which allows you to control the Mouse pointer with the DPad (great if you are like me and use the Mouse pointer as the pointer for your slides) The Treo’s Calendar and Message hard buttons function as the left and right Mouse click.

slideOther handy controls on the Palm include a Blank Screen option and a Switch Button which toggles between the Powerpoint presentation and the last opened application on the computer (something like Alt-Tab). The screenshot on the left shows a running presentation displaying Slide number 3 and the brief note about the slide. The bottom 4 buttons are from left Home, Blank, Mouse toggle, Application Switch.
The interface is not complicated and fairly intuitive. I could navigate and figure out most of the options without having to refer to the PDF manual. The only time I really looked hard at the manual was when I wanted to enter Notes for each slide and realised that you could only do so from the Desktop.

It does more than Powerpoint!

appsLibertyControl also has built-in controls for Internet Explorer. My default browser is Firefox and it unfortunately launches IE despite the default setting. Simply enter a URL in your Palm, Hit the Send button and the browser will fetch the page. Very neat and useful especially if your Presentation requires live Internet connection and display of web pages.

The other default control is for Media Player and it will load your Play list on your PC.kb
LibertyControl has thoughtfully added a Desktop Control module which allows you to launch 3 other applications of your choice.

You could also actually control the entire Notebook with the Palm since in Mouse mode, you could control the computer just as you would with the mouse. There is also a handy Virtual Keyboard and with Word open, I could actually type text into the Word document from my Treo!

I give this application two thumbs up!
For US$19.95, it would be a very worthy investment. Bluetooth USB dongles are going very cheap too nowadays so the whole setup would be inexpensive.
The two downsides I can think of would be lack of Mac support and inability to create/edit notes on the handheld but other than that, this is a powerful and flexible application.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

DOD Body Fat Calculator

DOD Body Fat Calculator v1.0 - free in

The Department of Defense released body fat measurement standards which are utilized by the Army, Air Force, Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard.
While the maximum percentages allowed varies by service, the method of calcuation remains the same.
You can utilize this program to see what your bodyfat percentage is through your Palm handheld easily with no need for the charts

Reminds me. I withdrew Fatcalc from Palmgear sometime back. Will re-release it again after I make some adjustments - this time as freeware too.....

Navigating the Streets of Bangkok

A fellow palm-toting doc acquaintance of mine, Doc Tamil of (the "X" for Xpert and Xtreme!), who's also a Public Health academician, is suddenly thrust with the responsibility of overseeing 7 students in a trip to the wilds of Bangkok.
Armed only with his wits, PDA and Internet access, Doc Tamil survived to tell the tale. You can read his account of Navigating The Streets of Bangkok With My PDA in the PalmX Yahoo group. Interesting use of Metro, Handmap and an Etrex GPS.
Google Earth view of the escapade.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Tips and Tricks on Using Epocrates® Essentials to Improve Patient Care

Epocrates invites you to a Webcast :

Please join us for the following webcast on October 26 at 9 am PT:
Get the Most Out of Your Palm Handheld or Smartphone in Medicine —
Tips and Tricks on Using Epocrates® Essentials to Improve Patient Care

How do you use your Palm? Sure, you can use it to schedule meetings, send emails, and store photos and contact information, but is it helping you practice safely and effectively when it matters most? This webinar will explore how to use your Palm Handheld or Treo smartphone with Epocrates software to better meet the needs of your patients.
To register for this webcast please visit

Monday, October 17, 2005

Getting productive with my Treo650

Now I know why they call it a Treo. It's really got three in one functions - PDA, Phone and Keyboard. I used to pooh-pooh the tiny Treo keyboard but I really find it now quite easy to type and it really comes in handy.
Today I managed to quickly type a letter (in Native Word format using the bundled Documents to Go) in the ward. Previously, if I had wanted to do so, I would have had to carry my portable keyboard with me so the Treo with the builtin keyboard does save me carrying an extra device. It's a little slower than typing on a full-size keyboard but faster than graffiti. You'll soon get used to the tiny buttons, I can assure you.
The other aspect is connectivity. I realise one can now leave on an Instant Messenger continuously on the Treo. This would make it easier for people to contact me and messaging this way costs less than sending SMSs. This would not have been possible with a PDA + phone combo as it would mean the PDA would have to be on all the time and the battery really wouldn't last as long.
Accessing the Internet too is so easy with GPRS/Edge which is much more pervasive as compared with Wifi. I only wish though that data plans were more reasonable!
I really appreciate the built-in camera. I sometimes forget casual contacts and one of the best ways is to jog the memory with a picture. Adding pictures to the contact details is now literally a snap with the Treo's builtin camera.
So, if youare a Treo user, how productively do you use your device? It's much much more than a "smartphone". It's really a mobile office and communicator.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

New in Freewarepalm

Spotted in FDA CFR Clinical Trials: an iSilo document conversion of the FDA's Code of Federal Regulations for Clinical Trials
Also check out Moody Log v2.0: This is very simple program to keep track your daily moods by date and time, you can define the moods that suit your own needs.


MeisterMed has released BreastFeed, a document by the Massachussetts Breastfeeding Coalition- another great free iSilo booklet from the iSiloDepot

TheMeister Says:
A great free reference to help clinicians promote breastfeeding. Includes information about frequently asked questions and troubleshooting early problems to avoid premature discontinuation of breastfeeding. Also details safety of common medications during breastfeeding. Very worthwhile. Get it.

Friday, October 14, 2005

Converting MobileDB to Handbase

Richard writes in:
I'm more interested in the "how" you converted the MobileDB file to a HanDBase file than the bones file itself. I too am a HanDBase user but I must plead my ignorance in knowing how to convert other databases to HanDBase. Any information you could provide me would be very much appreciated. Thanks in advance.

Thanks for writing Richard.
This is how I did it:
I donwloaded the trial for MobileDB PalmOS. There is a Desktop module which allows you to open the MobileDB database - from there you can export the table to CSV format. Open up the Handbase Desktop and import this CSV and then you can create the Handbase version.


Handheldmed has released CVMSTAT 2.0 in Palmgear

Application Description:
CVMstat® provides leading edge information on hundreds of topics involving all aspects of cardiovascular medicine, including sections on diagnosis and management of peripheral arterial and venous disease. CVMstat® reviews and summarizes important clinical trials in cardiology and vascular medicine.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Bones of the Human Body

bonesJ Martin has uploaded Bones of the Human Body in Memoware. This is a database of the 206 bones of the human body and the location of each bone within the body. I suppose it could be useful for students of anatomy and for clinicians who tend to forget little bones like Pisiform, Triquetral (gee that one sounds unfamiliar!) etc.
The database is in MobileDB format. I am a Handbase user myself so I managed to convert the database to Handbase format - see screenshot on the left. You could use Handbase 3.0's custom views to filter the area you want to display. I find this function quite useful.
If anyone wants a copy, please write in and I shall be happy to email it to you.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

TX and Z22 officially released

Well, Palm has officially released the long-rumored TX and Z22 models.
The TX is the "upgrade" to the T5 and has builtin dual wireless - Bluetooth 1.2 (a stemp up from 1.1 in the T5) and 802.11b standard Wifi.
Lots of reviews are now popping up and my pda-kaki Ebernie has a review roundup.

Monday, October 10, 2005


RxFiles is a Canadian site which promotes Objective Comparisons for Optimal Drug Therapy
RxFiles for PDA has a list of Comparison charts in MobileDB and Handbase formats. The Handbase files appear to be in an older format (Handbase 3.0 gave me a convert to new format option which worked well). The databases are mostly 2004 but there is an updated 2005 antibiotic comparison chart. There are some advantages over conventional drug databases for PDAs since at a glance you can compare things like prices and for example in the case of lipid lowering agents, their efficacy as shown in this screenshot:

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Quit Smoking Tool for your PDA

Good news for smokers. The AHRQ has released a free PDA Interactive Tool to help you quit smoking.

To use the application, the smoker plugs in the date he or she wants to quit, and the program counts back 5 days leading up to the quit date. It then offers a 5-day countdown of daily practical steps to help the smoker quit, such as identifying reasons to quit smoking; talking to the doctor about medications, including the nicotine patch or gum; and getting support from family and friends.

The AHRQ provides more links and resources to Treating Tobacco Use and Dependence
Thanks to PalmAddicts for the heads-up.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Which is the best PDA Drug Reference?

I sometimes get asked this question and indeed it is a pertinent one, given the numerous options we have today.
There has recently been an independent study which addressed this question, conducted by the Georgetown University and published this year in Clinical Pharmacology & Therapeutics (Knollmann, Bjorn C. MD, PhD; Smyth, Brendan J. MD, PhD; Garnett, Christine E. PharmD; Salesiotis, Anastasios N. MD; Gvozdjan, Dragoslav M. MD; Berry, N. Seth PharmD; Lee, Howard MD, PhD; Min, F. David MD Personal digital assistant-based drug reference software as tools to improve rational prescribing: Benchmark criteria and performance. Clinical Pharmacology & Therapeutics. 78(1):7-18, July 2005)

You can download the entire article (PDF Format) here and read the criteria and methodology the authors used to reach their conclusions.

Screenshots of the comparison tables from the article:
In terms of Rational Prescribing Featurse, Pepid is the winner

In terms of Comprehensiveness of the drug database, looks like Lexidrugs leads the pack

What do you think? I think most of you use Epocrates which rates somewhere in the middle of the lot. Not bad considering the basic Epocrates Rx has the best price of all - FREE!

Monday, October 03, 2005

Skyscape updates

Skyscape has updated 2 titles in Palmgear:
Griffith’s 5-Minute Clinical Consult 2006 (5MCC6™) 8.0.1
Clinical Anesthesia, 5th Ed. (ClinAne2™) 8.0.1

Great apps for mobile Docs, particularly 5MCC which is very useful for daily practice. The latest version of 5MCC incorporates these features:

* Broad scope covers more than 1,000 commonly encountered medical problems with the most current diagnostic and treatment information available.
* Proven 5-Minute format lets you locate and apply needed facts quickly.
* ICD-9-CM code index offers quick access to disease classification and coding data.
* 77 U.S. Preventive Services Task Force guidelines on screening, counseling, immunizations, and chemoprophylaxis
* New topics include: Genetic Risk Assessment and BRCA Mutation Testing for Breast and Ovarian Cancer Susceptibility, Overweight Children and Adolescents, Practice Guide, and Screening for Obesity in Adults
* Integrated calculators within topics for quick access to relevant medical formulas.
* Signs & Symptoms index allows you to select from a checklist of comprehensive symptoms to quickly see a list of matching diagnoses.

Saturday, October 01, 2005

The whole world in your hands

Gee I didn't realise that ;)
MedPageToday features an article on PDAs in Medicine - much of the article summarises what most of you already know: PDAs are indispensible in modern medical practice. However I still encounter colleagues who look down on those who use PDAs - like we have forgotten how to use our brains or something. Well I disagree, that is if you use PDAs sensibly. Having a PDA is like having an extra brain. It doesn't replace what you have, it complements it. Not having a PDA with you on the other hand is functioning sub-optimally. You don't have facts at your fingertips. You are not checking the latest info, drug adverse effects, drug-drug interaction and a whole host of things during your patient encounters. Of course, it does not replace the core knowledge that every good physician should possess. And yes, I agree with the article that doctors should not be reduced to functioning at the brain stem level and employing the "Palmomental reflex" at every instance. That would be the undesirable other extreme!

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Cabbage Palm

Epocrates has put up an interesting Case Study which demonstrates how their suite may be useful in a real-life patient scenario.
Its a nice little Demo - Flash required. View it - if you want to know what Cabbage Palm really is. (Hint: it has nothing to do with PDAs!)

Speaking of Epocrates, I'm even more convinced they have to get their act together and come out with a long overdue version which supports SD cards. I have had to temporarily ditch Epocrates as I can't fit it into the paltry Treo 650's Ram. I am sure other Treo users will much welcome Epocrates with full SD card support!

Family Practitioners are Embracing Mobile Medical Reference Solutions

Are they? I always though hospital based docs would be the first to happily embrace mobile referencing - something very useful when you are rounding or seeing consults.
Skyscape reports though that Fmaily Practitioners are also quickly turining to mobile references. Press release:
SAN FRANCISCO – Sept. 28, 2005 – Family Practitioners are enthusiastically embracing the use of mobile medical reference solutions and cite the timeliness of information and help in reducing medical errors among the greatest benefits, according to Skyscape, Inc., the leading provider of interactive mobile references for over 475,000 medical professionals.

“Already well aware of the personal productivity advantages of PDAs, a rapidly increasing number of family practitioners are employing their mobile devices as digital medical reference tools,” said Sandeep Shah, president and CEO of Skyscape.

The value of digital medical reference solutions among family practitioners is clear, Shah said. Physicians cite the timeliness of information and ability to instantly cross-index information between titles as the top two reasons for adopting the technology. Additional benefits include the accuracy and safety of referencing information from trusted sources, improving the quality of patient treatment at the point of care, and enhancements in personal productivity and efficiency.

Skyscape continuously updates its 300+ mobile medical reference titles on Palm, Pocket PC PDAS and smartphones, providing a timely resource that print publications cannot match, he noted. In addition, Skyscape's patented smARTlink™ technology enables readers to easily cross-index with its other clinical and drug prescription products. Combined, the technologies deliver a powerful and integrated source of mobile information for family practitioners, Shah said.

At Skyscape, the most popular downloaded titles by family practitioners include The
Washington Manual of Medical Therapeutics, 31st Ed; Harrison's Manual of Medicine, 16th Ed.; Outlines in Clinical Medicine, and the PIER Evidence-Based database from the American College of Physicians.

“Each physician typically has his or her own favorite texts – representing the ‘go to’ resources for the bulk of their daily reference needs. Today the print versions of those favorites largely remain in the office, as family practitioners load those same titles – in digital format – onto their PDAs to serve as up-to-date, anytime, anywhere mobile reference sources,” Shah said.

"I find that many family practitioners are using mobile devices, today. I personally use my PDA on a daily basis and the Skyscape references have become central to my mobile medical library,” says Dr. Alvin B. Lin, MD, FAAFP. “The ability to look up every important detail in trusted references like Harrison’s and the PIER Evidence-Based database from the American College of Physicians is such a tremendous asset when it comes to providing quality care to my patients.”

For more information, visit Skyscape in booth #3943 at the American Academy of Family
Physician’s 2005 Scientific Assembly in San Francisco, Sept. 28 – Oct. 2, 2005. Skyscape is on the Net at

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Clinical Pulmonology

Pacific Primary Care have released the 2006 version of Clinical Pulmonology in Palmgear.
Application Description:
Topics include: asthma, COPD, pneumonia, pneumonitis, lung cancer, sleep apnea, chronic cough, effusions, pleurisy, sarcoidosis, interstitial lung disease, pulmonary hypertension, hemoptysis, lung nodules, dyspnea, vocal cord dysfunction, atelectasis, PFT's, chest X-ray.....

As one of their customers, I can testify that their iSilo compatible references are great. Simple and concise - handy references when you need them.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Free Emergency Responder Resource for PDAs

Got this Press Release:
MARLBOROUGH, Mass. – Sept. 26, 2005 – Skyscape Inc. has updated its free “.911” emergency responder resource for Palm OS and Pocket PC devices with new recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) based on Hurricane Katrina experiences.
Designed as a concise and user-friendly resource for PDA and smartphone use by first responders, medical professionals, and the general public, “.911” is free and available for download from Skyscape at:
The new CDC recommendations include both preparations to undertake when facing an approaching hurricane as well as recovery efforts and healthcare issues to address following a storm.
Hurricane recovery topics include:
* Preventing illness
* Preventing injury
* Keeping food & water safe
* Clean up safety
* Animal and insect hazards
* Environmental concerns
* Disaster mental health
* CDC Katrina update
Diagnosis, treatment, and vaccine information for infectious diseases that might threaten communities following a hurricane strike, is also included.
In addition to the CDC, sources include The Medical Letter, and Outlines in Clinical Medicine/Medical Emergencies.
“.911” content is automatically updated via Skyscape's patented smARTlink™ technology. smARTlink also enables users to cross-index information with other Skyscape clinical and drug prescription solutions.

Related post: PDA helps in hurricane relief work

Monday, September 26, 2005

I got a Treo650!

Well I have taken the Convergence route. Then again high time too since looking at what I usually carry (thank goodness for Dockers Mobile pants) you could say I was well and truly into Divergence, since I usually have 2 cell phones and 2 PDAs on me!
Anyway, my 2 cell phones (both Sony Ericssons, a t610 and a t68i) were giving a little trouble so instead of getting new phones, I managed to grab a used Treo 650 off Ebay. It's about 6 months old and in pristine condition. A new unlocked GSM Treo650 here would cost about US$636. I paid US$410 for mine.
Another reason I got the Treo 650 was the news that the next Treo is going to be a Windows Mobile powered device. That's not for me. So I will hold out till the rumoured Cobalt powered Palm Treo is released, and wait till the bugs are ironed out.
I'll post my Treo650 experiences in this thread in the MMR forums. I am struggling a bit with trying to optimise putting stuff into the paltry 23MB Ram. If you are an experienced Treo 650 Medical Palm user, I would love to hear from you.