A stethoscope that helps doctors ‘see’ your heartbeat

Even as there has been tremendous technological advancement in healthcare over the years, there hasn’t been much innovation in the basic tool of a doctor for all these years – the stethoscope.

An Indian engineer displaying a visual stethoscope at the ongoing Arab Health 2017 in Dubai says the product allows doctors to capture heart sounds in audio as well as visually. This product is also capable to interact through the cloud and get interpretations from elsewhere, making it a useful telemedicine tool as well.

Since its inception in 1816, the stethoscope has been a critical tool for listening to heart sounds.  Launched by the Silicon Valley-based HD Medical, ViScope is a smart stethoscope with ECG integration that enables seeing, hearing and recording both heart and lung sounds for real-time collaboration, comparison and future diagnosis.

The stethoscope is capable of capturing ECG readings and with the support of analytics, it gives a full interpretation, which is on a par with a 12 lead ECG machine.

“HD Medical’s visual stethoscopes are uniquely capable of addressing today’s evidence-based medical environment,” says Arvind Thiagarajan, Chairman and Chief Inventor for HD Medical. “ViScope is the industry’s first stethoscope to enable documentation of heart data which can be used for patient reporting and analysis as well as information sharing, teaching situations and telemedicine applications.”

HD Steth combines stethoscope features like smart amplification, visualisation capabilities and proprietary algorithms that assist with diagnosis with ECG benefits to help improve the acuity of diagnosis for any caregiver.

HD Medical says it is hoping to provide greater access to cardiac specialists, improve early detection and reduce cost with their real-time and simultaneous visualisation of heart sounds and ECG to provide connected, continuous and collaborative care.

Costing around $500, ViScope ECG retains all the ease of use and familiar look of a traditional stethoscope. “There are other digital stethoscopes in the market but this one can take the ECG of a patient. It is getting trendy in the US,” said Arun Kumar AM, Director, Clinic Operations, Gulf Healthcare International in UAE, who is fascinated by the digital stethoscope.

For the first time, medical professionals are able to perform dynamic auscultation and ‘see’ the heartbeats they hear in real-time visual waveforms

V M Sathish/Khaleej Times

Picture source: Alamy Image
Picture used for illustrative purposes alone


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