A new app is all set to compete with the traditional stethoscopes. The app has been developed by a team of researchers at the Orlando Health in Florida.
The stethoscope device called as HeartBuds will detect heart beats accurately and also is safe and hygienic when compared to the traditional stethoscopes.
‘HeartBuds app helps doctors to measure heartbeat accurately and can record, store and share sounds as well unlike traditional stethoscopes.’
"They not only detect sounds inside the body just as well -- or better -- than traditional stethoscopes, but they are more sanitary. And because they incorporate smartphone technology, we can now record, store and share those sounds as well. This could change the way we approach patient exams in the future," said David Bello, chief of cardiology at Orlando Health, who developed HeartBuds.
The small electronic disc-shaped listening device can be held against the patient' s chest and through an accompanying app doctors can listen and also see a graphical representation of the heartbeat.
Patients can also hear their heartbeat and save the readings on their phone for future reference. The device was tested on 50 patients along with two FDA-approved class I and class II stethoscopes and one popular disposable model.
It was found that HeartBuds matched the performance of the class I and II models, while they were considerably better than the disposable. Also, HeartBuds are hygienic as they don't have earbuds where bacteria are prone to grow and therefore pose less risk for bacteria transmission to patients.
"You can use a specific stethoscope for a specific patient and not worry about transferring bacteria inadvertently from improper cleaning of a stethoscope that you would normally carry around your neck," says Dr.Valerie Danesh, a clinical research manager at Orlando Health, and a co-author on the study.
HeartBuds can also be used by everyday people to monitor their own health or fitness, and are available now for US$49.95.