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Wearable Optical Device Shows Promise for Detecting Postpartum Hemorrhage

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Reading data captured by the wearable device.

The wrist-worn device uses laser speckle imaging to catch early signs of postpartum hemorrhage.

Credit: Francesca Bonetta-Misteli/Washington University in St. Louis

A wearable optical device developed by Washington University in St. Louis (WashU) researchers can detect postpartum hemorrhage early.

Said WashU's Christine O'Brien, "By monitoring blood flow in the wrist, our device can detect peripheral vasoconstriction as it occurs in response to postpartum hemorrhage before the patient starts to show symptoms."

The wearable device detects peripheral vasoconstriction via a wireless laser speckle flow index system that measures spatial and temporal changes in speckle patterns formed by laser light interacting with flowing blood cells.

The researchers tested the wearable laser speckle imaging sensor on a swine model of hemorrhage, and the results were encouraging enough for them to undertake studies with healthy volunteers.

From Optica
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