Have you ever wondered how medical treatments are developed? How do we know that one treatment will work over another? It all lies in the research. Everything from over-the-counter medicines to prescriptions is a result of research. Holistic healing from massage therapy to acupuncture are backed by years of research. We know there is research regarding heart health and cancers, but it spans across every aspect of healthcare. Today we look at why we need research in certain areas and how it changes the treatments available.
Samples Are Needed
In many cases, scientists need tissue samples to study. Any time you have a biopsy, that tissue sample is tested for a disease and sent off to a lab to be studied. Occasionally, samples are taken during an autopsy (this is especially true for rare and fatal diseases). They look for anomalies in DNA and check the cells in the samples. They want to find discrepancies that could lead to why the disease or disorder has occurred. They can test combinations of elements and chemicals that they believe could reduce symptoms or even cure a person completely. All the samples require special biological storage so that their integrity remains intact and can be used later in other possible studies once the current research is complete.
Changing The World Of Physical Therapy
Physical therapy may not come to mind when we think of medical research but it does play an integral part in helping a patient to heal. Scientists take time to learn about how to improve muscle movement after a long time in a hospital bed or how to recover from heart issues with exercise while not overdoing it. They learn how spinal surgeries affect the body and how they can best help a patient attain more movement over time. The research is done through education, clinical trials, health services research, movement analysis, and bench services. Since physical therapists are working in conjunction with other medical professionals, they have to stay up to date on all research and new techniques and treatments that are released.
Mental Health Needs Research
Mental health research has often challenged what we thought to be true and has helped us discover many of the complexities of our brains. Without research, we would have never known that PTSD is a memorized brain pattern and the brain can be re-trained to improve function and allow for healthy choices. It has routinely changed how we view certain maladies and how we treat them. Pre-menstrual syndrome was once considered a mental health disorder and now we know better. Even now, there is research taking place on the use of mobile applications and their efficacy assisting with treatment.
Research is an ongoing endeavor for our healthcare. We don’t have all the answers just yet but we have certainly made some serious medical breakthroughs. You may not enjoy your treatments or even understand how they might help, but research is why you have them. If you do have questions about treatments, ask! If you would like to become a part of the research, talk to your doctor and ask about clinical trials that you may qualify to be a part of. It’s a gamble at times but you could be the one who helps discover a new medicine or help fine tune a treatment.