PDA software

Discussion in 'Clinical Rotations' started by dbiddy808, Apr 9, 2002.

  1. dbiddy808

    dbiddy808 Senior Member
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    I am about to start my internship. I'm wondering if anyone has any suggestions on which PDA software to buy.

    It seems like there is quite alot out there, most of it is somewhat expensive. I only want to buy things that I think I'll end up using.

    Any suggestions will be appreciated.
     
  2. Future GI Guy

    Future GI Guy Hoo Hoo....
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    I'm not a resident (3rd year Med Student here), but I use my PDA a LOT.

    I like to read about things that I see in clinic, right when I see them. Or if a patient is on a medication, and I'm not sure why, I like to know immediately. With that said, I think the absolute best program, the one that I use every day, is 5 Minute Clinical Consult.

    It's easy to look up topics, and takes all of 5 seconds. Plus, they have the ICD 9 code for every diagnosis.

    You can look up a drug in 5MCC and it'll take you to the diagnosis it's most used for.

    For instance, you look up Xenical, touch the screen, and it takes you to a discussion about Obesity. The index they have is user friendly and makes looking up information very quick.

    I also have Harrisons and Washington Manual, but they are cumbersome and do not include this kind of 'topic' index. They require two seperate programs for viewing them.

    Epocrates, hands down, is the best pharmaceutical reference, and of course, it's free. I like the updates they provide from time to time.

    Epocrates ID is also free and also useful.

    There's also something called "Common Simple Emergencies," that I think is useful and rapid.

    "Common Medical Therapeutics," is another program that I use. Both of them are FREE.

    There's lots of free medical applications out there, too many to evaluate, but you sure could if you have the time (i.e. before your intern year begins).

    Here are some helpful links. Some are intended for the patient, most for the health care professional:

    Here's one that's great to get started with. Provides a lot of info:

    <a href="http://pbrain.hypermart.net/" target="_blank">http://pbrain.hypermart.net/</a>

    <a href="http://www.freewarepalm.com/medical/medical_04.shtml" target="_blank">http://www.freewarepalm.com/medical/medical_04.shtml</a>

    <a href="http://palmtops.about.com/cs/medicalpalm/" target="_blank">http://palmtops.about.com/cs/medicalpalm/</a>

    <a href="http://www.memoware.com/Category=Medicine_ResultSet=0.htm" target="_blank">http://www.memoware.com/Category=Medicine_ResultSet=0.htm</a>

    <a href="http://palm.stanford.edu/quicksoftware.html" target="_blank">http://palm.stanford.edu/quicksoftware.html</a>

    <a href="http://medicine.wustl.edu/~wumpi/" target="_blank">http://medicine.wustl.edu/~wumpi/</a>

    <a href="http://pdacentral.planetmirror.com/epoc/medical5.htm" target="_blank">http://pdacentral.planetmirror.com/epoc/medical5.htm</a>

    You really have to search this one.

    <a href="http://www.palmgear.com/" target="_blank">http://www.palmgear.com/</a>

    Good luck to you.
     
  3. Another great one is Clinical Medicine Consult by Carl Weber, MD. You can find it on palmgear.com. It's an iSilo doc and has info not only on diseases but also on procedures, normal labs, exam techniques, pearls, etc. Plus it has handy diagrams.

    Something that might be almost as important as a good medical application are little programs called 'hacks'. These are shortcuts that let you do a lot more stuff with your PDA in less time. Sites like palmgear.com are good places to look for hacks.
     
  4. Goofy

    Goofy Senior Member
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    I like much of the software already discussed.

    I disagree about epocrates however. It has certain benefits, like being free, and continuously updated. It also makes looking up information very quick. But it is a stripped down drug program that only covers the basics. I do use it regularly but wouldn't want to rely on it solely as an intern. It simply does not have all of the information you are going to need and use. I would take a real good look at lexi drugs too. I have found this program to be a far more comprehensive tool in drug management. Epocrates is a great program for routine use and quick fact look-ups. But for all inclusive information, your gonna need a program of the caliber of lexi-drugs.

    Check out the 'doctor palm' yahoo group for a listing of a bunch of free programs including calculators etc...

    <a href="http://groups.yahoo.com/group/DoctorPalm/" target="_blank">http://groups.yahoo.com/group/DoctorPalm/</a>
     
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  5. Carbon Klein

    Carbon Klein Senior Member
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    I have Harrisons and Merck and a ton of programs but I can't fit all of them on my palm 505. I bought a SD 64mb card and installed the reader and the books on the card, but cannot read them! Any suggestions?

    I basically want to use my SD card as a harddrive, so to speak. Will I need any extra programs that the palm didn't come with?

    (I read about MSMount and McFile, but I have no idea how to use them).

    Thanks.
     
  6. Goofy

    Goofy Senior Member
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    Carbon,

    I have a sony clie and run tons of programs from the card. In fact I have merck on my device as well. Since we are both running the palm os, I suspect you would need to do the same thing. What I do is put the reader in ram and the database on the card. You should be able to run Merck off the card if you place it in your 'launcher' folder. There is a nifty program called 'pidirect' that makes reading software off the card seamless. Once pidirect is installed, you place databases in your pidirect folder and than enable the software. Pidirect is a faster method in my opinion, but either should work for the vast majority of software available. One other note, you should install a launcher program that can read off the card first. I recommend a free program called launcher III. Install this launcher, than move your databases to the 'launcher' file on your card. Let me know if you need any other help.
     
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  7. Future GI Guy

    Future GI Guy Hoo Hoo....
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    Like yourself, I had problems running programs I placed on the extra memory.

    I have a handspring, however, and I don't know if the problem is exactly the same as Palm.

    That said, anything that is read by a document reader (like iSolo, what have you), can be placed on the additional memory. However, iSolo (the application) won't run on the card.

    So, it's like having microsoft word on your regular computer and the documents on a disk. You can't run word off a regular floppy. Same thing.

    It is a little more complicated (and perhaps frustrating) with other readers.

    Specifically, the Harrison's reader cannot be seperated from the Harrison's document, so you have to commit all this internal memory to Harrisons.

    5MCC is the same way. Everything stays on the PDA and not the memory card.

    If there is a way to solve that, i.e. to run applications off of the memory card, I'd sure like to hear about it.
     
  8. Future GI Guy

    Future GI Guy Hoo Hoo....
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    Hey Kleb,

    I was writing my post while you were posting yours...hence the repetition.

    I do have a question, though.

    Is there any way to move the database (say the drug database of Epocrates) to the card, while keeping the epocrates reader on the PDA?

    I have had little success separating the two from each other.

    Would this Launcher III help in this instance?

    Thanks.
     
  9. Goofy

    Goofy Senior Member
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    Hi Gi Guy,

    Yes, Epocrates can be run from the card although it is a somewhat tedious process. Additionally, you would lose the ability to hotsync I believe. If you are interested in it, I believe there was a post on the doctor palm group with these instructions. I have opted to keep it in ram, as I value the continuous updates, instead opting to regain more space by deleting unnecessary programs from Rom with Jacksprat.
     
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  10. dbiddy808

    dbiddy808 Senior Member
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    Thanks for all the good info everyone. I will have to take the time to sift through all of this stuff. I've had my palm for 7-8 months, but have not really used it that much yet.

    Do you people even carry books in your lab coats?
     
  11. Stormreaver

    Stormreaver The Blade of Tyshalle
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    The Johns Hopkins Antibiotic Guide is free to download and pretty darn good, too.

    <a href="http://www.hopkins-abxguide.org" target="_blank">www.hopkins-abxguide.org</a>
     
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  12. DDuncan

    DDuncan Senior Member
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    You can't go wrong with a HANDERA 330, if you want the best PDA for medicine.

    I can run nearly ANY program off of the memory card. 2 card slots: one CF one SD. high resolution screen. microphone built in, with built in speaker! The only lack is the color screen, which I don't need for medical programs.

    You can try out any of the Skyscape programs for FREE. try them and see which have the most use for you.

    I think the above mentioned lexidrugs is no longer available. of the drug references, I like Mosby's Rx (by skyscape).
     
  13. Goofy

    Goofy Senior Member
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    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by DDuncan:
    <strong>You can't go wrong with a HANDERA 330, if you want the best PDA for medicine.

    I can run nearly ANY program off of the memory card. 2 card slots: one CF one SD. high resolution screen. microphone built in, with built in speaker! The only lack is the color screen, which I don't need for medical programs.

    You can try out any of the Skyscape programs for FREE. try them and see which have the most use for you.

    I think the above mentioned lexidrugs is no longer available. of the drug references, I like Mosby's Rx (by skyscape).</strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Hi Dduncan,

    Actually Lexidrugs is still available. I believe the vendor has changed. If interested I will dig up the site.

    I have heard the handera is a great option for medicine. Having said that, I still believe the clie series is superior, but that is just a matter of opinion i suppose.

    Things I like better about the Clie:

    1. Memory stick is still the fastest memory card solution with faster rates than smartmedia, compact flash etc...

    2. Jog Dial - this feature alone is enough reason to get a sony. It makes navigation of a tiny computer effortless. But there is much more to like about the sony

    3. Back Button - another great navigational enhancement.

    4. Color screen - for those of you saying you don't 'need' it, try it and come back to me. Sony offers a brilliant color model for the same price as the handera black and white. There is no comparison with a handera.

    5. Price - With a little bit of searching, you can easily find a sony with the brilliant color screen and all of the above features for the same price as a black and white.

    ***Handera is a good option, but the Clie is the undeniable best Medical palm device out there right now. In my opinion of course.
     
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  14. Carbon Klein

    Carbon Klein Senior Member
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    Thanks for the info about PiDirect!

    What's the Doctor Palm group discussion? I'd like to check that out. Can somebody post the URL?
     
  15. LomaLindian

    LomaLindian Junior Member
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    Two-cents from a PPC user...

    I use the following on a regular basis...

    1)Dr. Drugs ( <a href="http://www.skyscape.com" target="_blank">www.skyscape.com</a> ): Great drug reference, basically a streamlined version of Lexidrugs which is arguably the most comprehensive drug database around.

    2)Online Lab Studies Guide ( <a href="http://mobile.neulabs.com" target="_blank">http://mobile.neulabs.com</a> ): A free database for laboratory values with differentials/treatment--free. It is formatted for PPC's but palm pilots can get it as well--you just need avantgo acct..

    3)Tabers Dictionary ( <a href="http://www.skyscape.com" target="_blank">www.skyscape.com</a> ): Great for all of those little details that are easy to forget.

    4)Archimedes ( <a href="http://www.skyscape.com" target="_blank">www.skyscape.com</a> ): Free calculator with many different equations (most of which you'll never use).

    5)5minCC (skyscape or handheldmed): Great quick dx and tx book.

    6)Sanford Guide ( <a href="http://www.sanfordguide.com" target="_blank">www.sanfordguide.com</a> ): Name says it all--works great.

    Things to aviod like the plague...

    1)JohnsHopkins Antibiotic guide: The worst app I've ever downloaded. I dl'd it and it never ran correctly. I tried to uninstall it--which turned out to be almost impossible. When I contacted the programmers--they told me how to unistall it--but forgot to tell me how to uninstall the spyware program that comes with it (imagine that). I was sending personal, private info to them for months. AVOID IT!!!!!

    2)Epocrates: *let the flaming commence* Epocrates is a great drug database, for its versatility and ease of use. But (and this is a big but) it is spyware. They download personal information from your desktop and palm pilot to sell to third parties--they can do whatever they want with it. Using this program comes at a price. There are much better databases available--although they aren't updated as regularly (one to two times a year).

    There is my two cents--coming from a Pocket PC perspective (having used palms too tho).
     
  16. Kirk

    Kirk Senior Member
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    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by LomaLindian:
    <strong>2)Epocrates: *let the flaming commence* Epocrates is a great drug database, for its versatility and ease of use. But (and this is a big but) it is spyware. They download personal information from your desktop and palm pilot to sell to third parties--they can do whatever they want with it. Using this program comes at a price. There are much better databases available--although they aren't updated as regularly (one to two times a year).

    There is my two cents--coming from a Pocket PC perspective (having used palms too tho).</strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">This is a bizarre statement. What makes you think that Epocrates contains spy wear? Do you have any info to substantiate this rumor, or are you just spreading typical Internet paranoia?
     
  17. LomaLindian

    LomaLindian Junior Member
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    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by Kirk: This is a bizarre statement. What makes you think that Epocrates contains spy wear? Do you have any info to substantiate this rumor, or are you just spreading typical Internet paranoia?
    </font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">No paranoia, just paying attention to what I dl.

    <a href="http://www.epocrates.com/company/privacy.cfm" target="_blank">http://www.epocrates.com/company/privacy.cfm</a>

    WHAT INFORMATION DO WE COLLECT?

    CONTACT AND DEMOGRAPHIC INFORMATION
    If you wish to register to use our Software, receive our Services or make a purchase on our Site, you are asked provide a variety of information, including (a) contact information such as your name and email address, and (b) demographic information such as your date of birth, profession, specialty and medical school attended. We may also collect similar information through contests or other promotions, or through your emailed information and technical support inquiries. Finally, we may supplement your data with information from third parties, including the AMA.

    SITE TECHNICAL AND USAGE INFORMATION
    As with most Internet sites, the Site collects a variety of technical data, including your IP address (a unique number that identifies your access account on the Internet), domain, and Web browser information. We may track the pages you visited before coming to the Site , the pages to which you jump when you leave the Site , which of our pages you access, and how long you spend on each page.

    The Site uses "cookies," which are small pieces of information stored on your computer and accessed by our Site. Cookies let our Site recognize returning visitors to our Site, record a visitor's progress from page to page, and recall certain information a visitor entered previously. For instance, a cookie may store your password, or note your particular areas of interest. You can choose to decline our cookies (e.g., by setting your browser to reject cookies), but if you do, some parts of the Site may not operate properly.

    There was also a section that read something about "we can use this information that we collect as we deem necessary."

    I have to admit I haven't read their privacy statement for about 6 months (it made unabashed statements of using any information they collect as they see fit in any enterprise). So it seems as if they have amended certain aspects of it (statements such as not using any personally identifiable information, just demographics, sent to third party software ppl).

    My point is that ppl don't realize what they agree to. There is a price to pay for such good software--how do you think epocrates keeps up and running?

    Maybe next time instead of clicking "OK" for everything you install on your palm, you should read what you are agreeing to.
     
  18. Kirk

    Kirk Senior Member
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    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by LomaLindian:The Site uses "cookies," which are small pieces of information stored on your computer and accessed by our Site. Cookies let our Site recognize returning visitors to our Site, record a visitor's progress from page to page, and recall certain information a visitor entered previously. For instance, a cookie may store your password, or note your particular areas of interest. You can choose to decline our cookies (e.g., by setting your browser to reject cookies), but if you do, some parts of the Site may not operate properly.

    There was also a section that read something about "we can use this information that we collect as we deem necessary."

    I have to admit I haven't read their privacy statement for about 6 months (it made unabashed statements of using any information they collect as they see fit in any enterprise). So it seems as if they have amended certain aspects of it (statements such as not using any personally identifiable information, just demographics, sent to third party software ppl).

    My point is that ppl don't realize what they agree to. There is a price to pay for such good software--how do you think epocrates keeps up and running?

    Maybe next time instead of clicking "OK" for everything you install on your palm, you should read what you are agreeing to.[/QB]</font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Once again, this is just Hysteria. They are talking about two things: the first is that they keep a record of the info you give them when you download the product. Duh. If I am providing this information I have a strong suspicion that they will keep it. The will most likely use it for demographics, marketing, etc.

    The second part they are referring to is ?cookies?. This deals with WEB PAGES, specifically their web page. NOT the software on your PDA. I am going to warn you, almost ALL webpages you visit are collecting demographic information about you. They can tell what page you came from (if you are linked there- its almost automatic, most browsers send this information). They can tell what your IP address is (they have to know this to send you the web page!). Also, many sites (including this one) store a small amount of into on your system like your password- ever wonder why you are logged on when you come back to studentdoctor?

    The only thing they monitor on the PDA software is which screens you use the most, or which drugs you look up. They don't access any other information on your PDA.

    Relax- your PDA and computer are safe. They are not spying on you (other then thier own software).
     
  19. LomaLindian

    LomaLindian Junior Member
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    Kirk,

    Don't worry, I am completely relaxed--I have an ipaq. I don't even use epocrates :) I guess I'm not making myself clear enough so I'll try again (hopefully more successful this time).

    SPYWARE: Def. In general, spyware is any technology that aids in gathering information about a person or organization without their knowledge. On the Internet, spyware is programming that is put in someone's computer to secretly gather information about the user and relay it to advertisers or other interested parties. Spyware can get in a computer as a software virus or as the result of installing a new program. Data collecting programs that are installed with the user's knowledge are not, properly speaking, spyware, if the user fully understands what data is being collected and with whom it is being shared.

    My WHOLE POINT IS THAT PPL DOWNLOAD EPOCRATES WITHOUT ANY KNOWLEDGE OF THE EXTENT THAT THEIR PERSONAL INFORMATION CAN BE USED. Some would say this is spyware. How many people do you know dl epocrates--fully aware that their internet browser is being pumped for info without their knowledge. This is COMPLETELY unrelated to the intent and purpose of the drug app that ppl are downloading.

    The next question is ... Do ppl care about this? Probably not. Thats not my point. My point is that epocrates dl's stuff unrelated to the drug app that they think they are getting. I think this is a form of spyware. Will ppl continue to use epocrates inspite of this--certainly.

    Six months ago epocrates made statements such as "personal information will be held by epocrates and will be distributed to third party's only when epocrates deems it necessary." That was what stemmed my original statement. That gave them free reign (not that they would necessarily use it) to get into a person's contacts, get all of the email addresses, and send spam. It seems as if they have changed their tune--which is good. I guess my original statement should have been entitled "Software to consider carefully before downloading" in my original post.

    I hope someone benefits from our exchange--even if to just get a laugh. I know I have :)
     
  20. Kirk

    Kirk Senior Member
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    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by LomaLindian:
    [QB]
    My WHOLE POINT IS THAT PPL DOWNLOAD EPOCRATES WITHOUT ANY KNOWLEDGE OF THE EXTENT THAT THEIR PERSONAL INFORMATION CAN BE USED. Some would say this is spyware. How many people do you know dl epocrates--fully aware that their internet browser is being pumped for info without their knowledge. This is COMPLETELY unrelated to the intent and purpose of the drug app that ppl are downloading.


    [QB]</font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">The sky is falling! The sky is falling! My whole point is that you don?t know what a ?cookie? is and what it is used for. You said ?How many people do you know dl epocrates--fully aware that their internet browser is being pumped for info without their knowledge.?. This is just completely wrong. Downloading epocraties does NOTHING to your browser. If you VISIT the epocraties site they will use a cookie to track the fact that you have been there before. Epocratie?s web page doesn?t ?pump? your browser for info, and as a matter of fact, the only thing it can read is the info it put there in the first place!

    Epocraties.com uses cookies.
    Studentdoctor.com uses cookies
    Cnn.com uses cookies
    Yahoo.com uses cookies
    Palm.com uses cookies

    Almost ALL webpages use cookies! If you are paranoid, turn off cookies in your web browser. It will mean that you will have to relog onto studentdoctor every time you want to post, but hey- I wouldn?t want studentdoctor pumping my browser for info.

    You also said ?Six months ago epocrates made statements such as "personal information will be held by epocrates and will be distributed to third party's only when epocrates deems it necessary." That was what stemmed my original statement. That gave them free reign (not that they would necessarily use it) to get into a person's contacts, get all of the email addresses, and send spam.?

    This is also wrong. Once again, they can?t read anything personal on your computer. Cookies and web pages can?t do that. Period. The personal information they are talking about is the information you freely give (i.e. type in) when you sign up for the product.
     

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