DIGITAL ELECTRONIC STETHOSCOPE
Thanks to a DTI SMART award, Staplethorne has investigated the technical and commercial feasibility of developing a cost-effective portable digital electronic stethoscope. This product will allow the digital recording and representation of heart sounds that are clear, objective, and consistent. These will be easy to understand and interpret and will be used for early cardiac diagnosis, for accurate medical records, and for training. Having a quantitative heart sound record should assist doctors and nurses, of varying experience, record and interpret these sounds and it should allow objective record keeping of the progression of heart valve disease. Records could also be sent elsewhere for expert opinion, telemedicine, e-medicine, etc.
Customers will be GPs and hospitals world-wide.
Other potential applications are:
Research - the system could be used to compile a database of different heart conditions.
As a training aid - for medical students and doctors in training grades.
Use by nurses - in remote regions and in third world countries.
Telemedicine/e-medicine - the heart sound recordings and diagrams could be transferred by email, etc., so that a GP or a nurse could forward them to a consultant to help with diagnosis, as well as accessing the proposed web database.
Industrial - the core technology could be adapted for industrial equipment monitoring.
Conventional stethoscopes allow doctors to listen to the noises that the heart makes, but the interpretation of these sounds is subjective and written notes and diagrams produced by doctors do not allow the creation of accurate records that can be referenced to later or shared. Their diagnosis of heart valve condition will be based on what particular features they hear and how significant they think they are. Having a quantitative record should assist doctors and nurses, of varying levels of experience, record and interpret these sounds and it should allow objective record keeping of the progression of heart valve disease. Records could also be sent elsewhere for more expert opinion and this could form part of a telemedicine (or, ‘e-medicine’) strategy. A web-based ‘reference library’ of heart sounds for various heart valve conditions could be set up, which customers could access.
Staplethorne are aiming to move into a development phase – ahead of clinical trials, manufacture, and world-wide product sales. We are looking for corporate partners who can contribute to the development, clinical, manufacturing and distribution aspects of this exciting project.
For more information, please contact:
Tel: +44 (0) 1404 42455
Fax: +44 (0) 1404 41455