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Developing the Sneezeometer to Detect Asthma

Asthma is a respiratory condition that causes many seniors to have difficulty breathing and can lead to other medical complications that Sacramento live-in caregivers may not be equipped to handle without help. Though asthma is treatable, it sometimes goes unnoticed until a senior has already spent years struggling to breathe properly. Scientists from the University of Surrey have used innovative 3D printing technology to create a device that can diagnose respiratory conditions as soon as they develop.

Dr. David Birch and Dr. Paul Nathan worked together to create what they are calling a Sneezometer. This device is actually an extremely sensitive spirometer that measures lung capacity, and it is so sensitive that it can even measure the speed of a sneeze. It works by measuring the minor fluctuations in breathing rate, which means it can pick up any abnormalities that might be caused by a breathing condition. Since asthma causes airways to become narrowed, the Sneezometer is able to diagnose asthma by measuring the reduced airflow of an asthma patient.

The extreme sensitivity of this machine is not the only revolutionary thing about it. The 3D printing method used to create the Sneezometer means that it is extremely cheap to manufacture this equipment. The many parts and components of the machine are printed around the internal electronics, so it is fast and easy to make the lightweight machine. The new form of a spirometer is far less expensive and much more portable than other devices used to diagnose asthma and could therefore revolutionize the way asthma is diagnosed. 

Rather than having to wait until they are exhibiting severe symptoms of asthma, seniors could get a diagnosis while their only symptom is a slight decline in lung capacity. This would keep them from unnecessarily discomfort and complications from a condition that is mostly treatable. The doctors are currently testing the device at Kings College Hospital in London and they hope to have it produced and used worldwide by 2018. 

Should your loved one require help managing his or her asthma, reach out to Sacramento Home Care Assistance. We are a leading home care agency that provides flexible live-in and hourly care to help seniors manage illnesses, recover from injury, and take care of things around the house. Give your loved one the support he or she needs and call 916.706.0169 today to schedule a free consultation with an experienced Care Manager.