Image: A compact spirometer measures lung function at home (Photo courtesy of NuvoAir).
A novel hand-held spirometer can help improve self-management of ongoing lung conditions such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and cystic fibrosis (CF).
The NuvoAir (Stockholm, Sweden) Air Next Spirometer is a sleek, hand held device that measures a host of respiration parameters, including forced expiratory volume (FEV1), the volume of air exhaled during the first second of forced expiration, starting from a full inspiration; forced vital capacity (FVC), the volume of air exhaled during forceful complete expiration, when starting from a full inspiration; FEV1/FVC ratio; and peak expiratory flow (PEF), the maximum speed of expiration, starting from a full inspiration.
To operate the Air Next, the user simply blows into the mouthpiece for a few seconds as guided by the accompanying app, which is connected wirelessly to the device via Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE), a more efficient and cost-effective form of wireless technology. Spirometry results are then instantly forwarded to the smartphone or tablet, where they are displayed in the form of graphs and animations. Air Next is also connected to a secure and compliant cloud that allows the patient to access their data and share it with their health care team.
“NuvoAir has demystified spirometry by bringing it directly into the hands of patients and physicians across the world. It reduces the communication gap between their doctors and health care teams, so improving the quality of care,” said Lorenzo Consoli, CEO of NuvoAir. “In this device we have distilled two years of experience of working with patients to design a device that works easily for them. We believe this will improve the management of many serious lung conditions for the patient, their families and their health care professionals too.”
Spirometry is the most common pulmonary function test. It measures lung function, specifically the volume and/or flow of air that can be inhaled and exhaled. Generally, the patient is asked to take the deepest breath they can, and then exhale into the sensor as hard as possible, for as long as possible, preferably at least six seconds. It is sometimes directly followed by a rapid inhalation (inspiration), in particular when assessing possible upper airway obstruction.