Today is National Rare Disease Day. Figure 1, an app for medical professionals, has released a 28-part series, 28 Zebras, to highlight interesting experiences in the medical field related to rare diseases.
“The typical rare disease patient sees 10 specialists before an accurate diagnosis is made,” the Toronto startup explains. “They are misdiagnosed three times, and the whole diagnostic journey takes seven years.”
Figure 1 asked app users: How have you cared for patients with rare diseases?
“Often, physicians do not consider the diagnosis of their rare disease in their differential diagnosis,” a respirologist said, highlighting the need for more awareness. “[And] due to the small number of cases there is not much research into the treatment options for these patients.”
It’s exactly the type of problem that Figure 1, a finalist in this year’s Canadian Startup Awards, aims to solve. The company’s app has created a professional networking of medical students and experts who can share rare problems, study the diagnoses of others’, and offer and receive guidance on unique cases.