Features | Partner Sites | Information | LinkXpress
Sign In
SOREDEX
Ampronix
Shuenn Bao Shing Corporation

New Method Detects Pneumonia Using a Microphone

By HospiMedica International staff writers
Posted on 15 Jul 2013
A new technique can reliably detect pneumonia in children using only a microphone and simple computer.

Researchers from the University of Queensland (UQ; Brisbane, Australia) recorded hundreds of coughs from 91 pediatric patients suspected of acute respiratory illness such as pneumonia, bronchiolitis, and asthma at Sardjito Hospital (Yogyakarta, Indonesia), as well as healthy controls. Working with pediatric respiratory technicians, they then extracted features such as non-Gaussianity and Mel Cepstra from cough sounds and used a logistic regression classifier to identify the coughs as either pneumonic or nonpneumonic, and trained a computer algorithm to recognize the difference.

The resulting audio-only test can separate pneumonia from other diseases at a sensitivity of 94% and a specificity of 75%, based on parameters extracted from cough sounds alone. The inclusion of other simple measurements such as the presence of fever further increased the performance. Portable and cheap, the technology could improve healthcare for children in poor, remote areas. Since it requires small processing power, it could serve as an ideal app for a smartphone, which already comes equipped with the requisite microphone and data storage. The study describing the method was published ahead of print on June 7, 2013, in Annals of Biomedical Engineering.

“Our results indicate the feasibility of taking a cough-centered approach to the diagnosis of childhood pneumonia in resource-poor regions,” said lead author Udantha Abeyratne, PhD, of the UQ school of information technology and electrical engineering. “The technology, in its simplest version, will require between five and 10 cough sounds and will automatically and immediately provide a diagnosis without requiring physical contact with patients.”

Pneumonia annually kills over 1,800,000 children annually worldwide, according to the World Health Organization (WHO; Geneva, Switzerland); the vast majority of these deaths occur in resource poor regions such as the sub-Saharan Africa and remote Asia. Prompt diagnosis and proper treatment are essential to prevent these unnecessary deaths, but is fraught with difficulties arising from the lack of field-deployable imaging and laboratory facilities as well as the scarcity of trained community healthcare workers.

Related Links:
University of Queensland
Sardjito Hospital
World Health Organization


Armstrong Medical Industries
Asian Healthcare Show
CardioComm Solutions

Channels

Women's Health

view channel

Women with PTSD Face Higher Pregnancy Risk

Suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) significantly increases a pregnant woman's risk of premature birth, according to a new study. Researchers at Stanford University (CA, USA) conducted a study to identify antenatal PTSD status and spontaneous preterm delivery in a retrospective cohort (2000-2012).... Read more

Health IT

view channel
Image: A screenshot from the 'cat and mouse' game designed to treat amblyopia (Photo courtesy of Ohio State University).

Video Games Help Improve Vision Training

New video games add an important element of entertainment to the repetitive training needed to improve vision in people with ambylopia (lazy eye) and poor depth perception. Developed by researchers... Read more

Hospital News

view channel
Image: Proposed site of the new University of Canberra Public Hospital (Photo courtesy of ACT).

New Hospital Planned at the University of Canberra

The government of the Australian Capital Territory (ACT, Canberra, Australia) has signed an agreement with University of Canberra (UC; Australia) to build a new hospital on its campus. The new UC Public... Read more

Business

view channel

Staff Shortages Driving Patient Monitoring Device Sector

Staff shortages and reductions are driving sales of patient monitoring systems with remote or wireless reporting functions. These are the latest findings of Kalorama Information (New York, NY, USA), an independent medical market research firm. While patient monitoring includes all products and services that facilitate... Read more
 
Copyright © 2000-2014 Globetech Media. All rights reserved.