Novel Imaging Software Diagnoses Jaundice In Babies

Dec, 2021 - By WMR

Novel Imaging Software Diagnoses Jaundice In Babies

Scientists developed imaging software system that diagnoses jaundice accurately and turns on LED light to respond to it as well as sends the diagnosis to the caregiver in an SMS.

Nearly 60% of newborn babies are affected by jaundice, and it normally clears up by itself. However, it can cause brain damage or hearing loss in newborn babies. Hence, it is crucial to detect the condition and treat it as soon as possible. A group of scientist from the university of South Australia and Technical University, Iraq developed a new system that uses 1080p webcam that is constantly pointed at the newborn from 30cm, and an Arduino Uno microprocessor is linked to the system that constantly analyzes the output of camera through a custom program.

The Arduino detects when the skin of the infant becomes too yellow, and it activates an adjacent blue LED light as well as it sends an SMS alert to the caregiver. This whole procedure takes only one second to execute. Then the caregiver can come and inspect the newborn for themselves, which allows to continue the phototherapy treatment if it is necessary. The team tested the system in 20 newborns. The system accurately assessed bilirubin levels in the newborns that already had jaundice, moreover, it also differentiated between jaundice and healthy newborns in 16 supplied photos.

According to the scientists, other methods were proven to be unreliable, high-cost, ineffective, and some of them even caused allergies and infections where the skin contact was needed for the sensors. This new system overcomes these obstacles as it instantly detects jaundice allowing high accuracy of diagnosis at a relatively low cost. The team is planning the further testing for the new system. It would be useful in hospitals and medical centers across the globe, where there is lack of skilled medical staff.

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