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Smartphones Are Revolutionizing Medicine

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Using a smartphone in a physical exam.

Smartphone add-ons and applications are turning the devices into revolutionary medical tools, according to researchers.


Researchers say smartphone add-ons and applications are turning the smartphones into revolutionary medical tools.

University of Washington professor Shwetak Patel notes asthma and other pulmonary illnesses can be diagnosed with smartphone microphones, while the camera and flash on a mobile phone could be employed to diagnose blood disorders. "With these enabling technologies you can manage chronic diseases outside of the clinic and with a non-invasive clinical tool," Patel says.

He also says smartphones' image motion sensor can detect resonances produced when a user taps on their elbow, which can help diagnose osteoporosis.

Patel says these innovations can encourage better self-care by patients, especially in developing countries and in individuals faced with conditions such as diabetes and cancer.

"The pervasiveness of the adoption of mobile platforms is quite encouraging for grappling with pervasive socio-economic determinants in terms of healthcare disparities," says Georgia Institute of Technology professor Elizabeth Mynatt.

From Agence France-Presse
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