Navigation Links
New sound synchronization technology holds the key to earlier diagnosis of heart disease
Date:6/2/2011

Innovative UK technology is contributing to the development of a revolutionary digital stethoscope that could make it easier for GPs to spot the first signs of heart disease.

With Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) funding, a Queen Mary, University of London (QMUL) team has developed a computer-based technology that synchronises the various sounds collected by the new stethoscope and which make up a human heartbeat.

The sounds can then be analysed by an existing technique called ICA (independent component analysis), with data presented on a laptop or desktop computer in easy-to-understand graphs. These provide a visual representation of the heartbeat and any anomalies in it. Currently, such anomalies can be missed by doctors who aren't experts in cardiac care.

ICA can only analyse heartbeats if all the different sounds that make up an individual's heartbeat are brought together as one overall sound.

Like a conventional stethoscope, the new stethoscope captures four sounds one after another. The computer-based technology developed by the QMUL team then turns these separate sounds into one combined signal which ICA can then process. The QMUL synchronisation technology therefore plays a vital bridging role between the new stethoscope and ICA.

With conventional stethoscopes, the identification of a potential heart problem is completely reliant on the expertise and listening skills of the GP.

QMUL's technology was unveiled on 25th May at the 36th International Conference on Acoustics, Speech and Signal Processing held in Prague in the Czech Republic.

The overall stethoscope development project is an international collaboration led by Portugal's University of Porto and Centro Hospitalar Alto Ave, Guimares.

"Heart disease is still the UK's number-one killer", says Professor Mark Plumbley, who has led the QMUL work. "Our work here is making a vital contribution to an invention that will help GPs identify heart problems before they become serious even when patients come to surgery about a totally unrelated health matter. Early interventions not only help patients but also reduce the burden on healthcare resources."

As well as being suitable for use in GP surgeries, the stethoscope called the DigiScope will be ideally suited to outpatient clinics, accident & emergency units and other hospital departments where doctors are not necessarily cardiac specialists.

The DigiScope is designed to be used by doctors in exactly the same way as they use a conventional stethoscope. They position the end piece, in turn, on four different places on the patient's chest. However, with the DigiScope these four separate sounds are then transmitted wirelessly to a laptop or desktop and synchronised by the QMUL technology as if they were all transmitted simultaneously. They are then analysed using ICA.

With the new system, doctors can compare the visual graphs produced with 'normal' readings while the patient is there, or save the graphs and study them later. Or a second opinion on the data can be obtained, via the internet, from another doctor located miles away.

"It's the multidisciplinary character of this exciting international collaboration that has enabled it to produce such a promising outcome," says Professor Plumbley. "Two prototype DigiScopes are already in use to test their capabilities. The development will not remove the need for specialist cardiac units, it will simply make it easier to identify potential heart problems at an earlier stage."


'/>"/>

Contact: EPSRC Press Office
pressoffice@epsrc.ac.uk
01-793-444-404
Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Sound safety
2. New technology fuses MRI, ultrasound to achieve targeted biopsy of prostate cancer
3. Ultrasound combined with pre-operative MRI is cost effective in evaluating rotator cuff tears
4. Inner Ear Can Store Recent Sounds, Study Finds
5. High-volume portable music players may impair ability to clearly discriminate sounds
6. Sea grant awards more than $1.1 million for research under EPAs Long Island Sound study
7. Bedside ultrasound becomes a reality
8. That Squeaking Sound Might Come From Your New Hip
9. Look-and-Sound-Alike Names Account for Many Painkiller Prescription Errors
10. Microbubble ultrasound and breast biopsies
11. Ultrasound and a blood test can increase survival after myocardial infarction
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... Many families have long-term insurance that ... insurance companies have a waiver for care if the client has a cognitive impairment ... family pays for care, is often waived, so the benefits from their insurance start ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... ... Talented host, actor Rob Lowe, is introducing a segment ... of "Success Files," which is an award-winning educational program broadcasted on PBS Member ... with passion and integrity. , Sciatica occurs when the sciatic nerve in the ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... are now treating sleep apnea using cutting-edge Oventus O2Vent technology. As ... serious sleep disorder characterized by frequent cessation in breathing. Oral appliances can offer ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... , ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... a leader in post-acute health care, have expanded their existing home health joint ... Health. , AccentCare has been operating a joint venture home health company with ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... On Saturday, October 21, the Health ... Miles by Moonlight to raise money for the American Heart Association Heart Walk. Teams ... Teams will work together to keep their treadmills moving for 5 hours. Treadmills will ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:10/11/2017)... , Oct. 11, 2017  BioPharmX Corporation (NYSE MKT: ... that developed an innovative way to use nonlinear optical ... delivery of new drugs. ... Dermatology Conference will show how researchers from BioPharmX and ... Medical School used a suite of imaging techniques in ...
(Date:10/10/2017)... , Oct. 10, 2017  NDS received FDA 510(k) clearance ... a medical-grade battery-powered display stand specifically designed for endoscopy environments. An ... technology into a clinical solution to support the improvement of patient ... Innovative Design ... Wireless Solution ...
(Date:10/4/2017)... 2017  South Korean-based healthcare product Development Company I.M. ... on Kickstarter. The device will educate the user about ... better efficiency compared to the dated and pricey CPR ... efficacy of the compression for a more informed CPR ... to raise $5,000. ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: