For patients with conditions like asthma, chronic bronchitis, or cystic fibrosis doctors sound out their pipes using a spirometer, a device that measures volumes of air breathed in and out. The exhaled volume indicates if the patient’s air passages are clogged and leading to difficulty breathing.
The Spirosmart app estimates the volume of air exhaled by the sound waves recorded as you breathe out.
SpiroCall, as the team is calling the setup, involves dialing a number and leaving a long breath of air as a voice message on a server. In very early tests, the team found that phone lines preserved enough audio quality for the recorded exhalation to be used as a spirometric substitute. This indicates that any phone, even basic cellphones that are common in developing countries, could be used to remotely measure lung health or detect signs of lung disease.
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