Parents to Diagnose Ear Infections via Smartphone App

Now parents will be able to diagnose the ear infection of their kids. Researchers are working to develop a smartphone app. The app will use the phone’s microphone, its speaker and a small paper cone. With the help of a simple paper cone, parents will be able to detect fluid buildup in a child’s ear.

Parents to Diagnose Ear Infections via Smartphone App

The app will send short, sound pulses through a funnel/cone and into the ear canal. It will then measure the echo of that sound, and an algorithm uses the reading to predict if there’s fluid behind the eardrum. It is one of the common symptoms of infection.

The app is still in the testing phase and researchers are doing an experiment on it. Before it could hit the market, it would require clearance by the Food and Drug Administration. The early data suggests that the smartphone can perform also an expensive test in a doctor’s office.

There are so many health-related apps, but this one is unique as it uses the phone’s microphone and speaker to diagnose the ear infection.

The researchers’ team from the University of Washington and the Seattle Children’s Research Institute, checked the app on about 50 children and the tool was correct about 85 percent of the time.

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