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Instant testing for sore throats wins CIMIT prize
Date:7/8/2010

One goal of the CIMIT Prize is to challenge engineers, early in their careers, to consider healthcare as a career option. This prize seems to have inspired the student to consider the common problem of proper diagnosis of sore throats at the primary-care level, rather than only using the platform technology in more acute applications like diagnosing septic patients in intensive care.

Second prize rewards a second Cornell-based team of innovative students for their project that uses continuous ultrasound therapy for more efficient help in managing chronic pain. Beyond the initial use of pain-management drugs, patients with chronic conditions such as osteoarthritis and sciatica are most often referred for periodic short therapy treatments with ultrasound. The $100,000 award will support clinical evaluation of "Wearable Low-Intensity Ultrasound Therapy". Led by George K. Lewis, Jr., a doctoral candidate in Biomedical Engineering, the team's hypothesis is that this wearable technology, which would deliver low-power ultrasound to promote pain relief and even healing, could be dispensed as a disposable device at the front lines of primary care, where diagnosis warrants.

And, recognized with the $50,000 third prize is "Cardiocam: Technology for Non-Contact Multi-Parameter Physiologic Measurements". Led by Ming-Zher Poh, a MIT-HST doctoral candidate in the Media Lab, this project has pilot data showing that they can capture some physiologic data purely by image analysis over the internet from a web-cam looking at a patient's face. Already, the team has captured heart-rate with great accuracy, during ordinary video-conferencing remote interactions. Respiratory rate and blood oxygenation are their next two goals. This approach correlates well with the evolving paradigm of offering more primary care through outreach and by delivering care at the right time, in the right place and if possible, without requiring office visits.

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Contact: Elaine Richardson
emrichardson@partners.org
617-643-3838
CIMIT
Source:Eurekalert

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