Parkinson’s Disease and other degenerative motor system diseases are notoriously complicated to diagnose perfectly. But now, new study has resulted in a novel application that allows smart phones to work as a “pocket doctor,” spotting very early signs of the disease by calculating slight modifications in speech and activity.
The app was introduced recently at the British Science Festival UK, by Dr. Max Little.
A growing number of smart phones are being applied as a medical diagnostic device for treating or diagnosing different disorders.
For instance, a smartphone mobile eye testing equipment is being used to revolutionize eye care in poorer countries. And a smart phone case has been designed that can determine key essential signs.
The purpose Parkinson’s Disease is so challenging to diagnose is that there are presently no blood or laboratory examining available to recognize sporadic Parkinson’s Disease. As an outcome, the diagnosis is usually based on medical record and a neurological examination, and physicians may often execute brain scans or lab assessments to rule out other diseases.
The primary symptoms of the situation include tremor, hardness or stiffness of the limbs and trunk, slowness of activity, and postural uncertainty or impaired balance and co-ordination.
In obtain to glean data about how Parkinson’s Disease symptoms modify in individuals on an hourly basis, Dr. Little and his group have used the most recent advances in smartphone technology.
“This new type of distant data analysis will assist sufferers to monitor their situations on a minute-by-minute base from the convenience of their own homes. Obviously, it is even now essential that they get regular guidance and therapy from medical specialists, who may also benefit from this new tool.”
Dr. Little adds that doctors could also use the information from their sufferers’ smartphones to recommend medicines to help with neurodegenerative conditions.
App records data every 20 microseconds
In one of their research, Dr. Little and his group requested sufferers with Parkinson’s Disease to use the smart phones with the application so they could gather data on how they moved, how frequently the spoke to others and how their voices modified over time.
Documenting data every 20 microseconds, the scientists were capable to collect an intensive amount of data, which they say could possibly help in evaluating individuals who are vulnerable to developing Parkinson’s Disease.
“The situation is difficult to diagnose,” states that Dr. Little, “with professionals having to take a specific history of peoples’ symptoms and examining them for physical signs of the condition. Using smartphone information may assist to make this process much simpler.”
His previously research discovered voice design variations between individuals with and without the disease, and in a small research, he and his team identified that accuracy of finding the disease was nearly 99%.
Presently, the group is rendering the technology and gathered data into a mobile format to offer daily evaluation and feedback, and are evaluating the app in a group of 2,500 people at the University of Oxford. They are also examining rare genetic situations, for instance Friedrich’s Ataxia, which leads to muscle weakness, loss of speech and hearing.