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'Smart stethoscope' advance in monitoring treatment of kidney stones
Date:12/12/2012

utational fluid dynamics (CFD) use to inform judgements underpinning the invention of the smart stethoscope, is published in the latest issue of the Royal Society journal Proceedings of the Royal Society A.

Dr Fiammetta Fedele of GSTT said: "Professor Leighton's CFD predictions of the acoustic signals emitted when bubbles collapse against kidney stones during SWL led (through collaboration with GSTT and Precision Acoustics Ltd.) to a 5,000 passive acoustic sensor. When placed on the patient's skin this sensor diagnoses successful SWL treatments (with 94.7 per cent accuracy in clinical trials, compared to the 36.8 per cent achieved by clinicians with the current state-of-the-art equipment suite). An accurate diagnostic is needed to conform with the 2004 'The NHS improvement Plan: putting people at the heart of public services' of reducing the 'patient pathway', because currently 30-50 per cent of SWL patients require re-treatment and an unknown are overdosed."

The NHS is trialling the smart stethoscope as part of major plans to reduce inaccurate diagnoses and ineffective treatments, and so far GSTT has used the sensor on over 200 patients.

In subsequent use of the device, GSTT have found it has the additional benefit that it can detect whether the treatment will work, before the stage when any possible adverse side effects from the treatment are likely to have occurred. This allows ready identification of those patients who should not receive this treatment, but whom should be referred to some other therapy to treat their kidney stones.

Professor Leighton says: "The research in the paper describes how we reached the decision stage to move from relatively inexpensive computer simulation to much more costly clinical trials in collaboration with NHS. This is a critical stage in R+D of this type if the move is taken too early, the expensive clinical trials do not have adequate underpinning science and engineering, resources are wasted, and the e
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Contact: Glenn Harris
G.Harris@soton.ac.uk
44-023-805-93212
University of Southampton
Source:Eurekalert  

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