Intelligent wearable sensors to monitor disease and diagnose
23 June 2010
Researchers at the University of Southampton are developing
intelligent medical sensors that can be worn by patients to monitor
their symptoms and alert a healthcare professional if medical
intervention is needed.
Dr Koushik Maharatna at the University’s School of Electronics
and Computer Science (ECS) and Professor John Morgan (University of
Southampton School of Medicine) and Dr Nick Curzen at Southampton
University Hospitals NHS Trust are part of a team working on the £18
million European-funded CHIRON project (Cyclic and Person-Centric
Health Management: Integrated Approach for Home Mobile and Clinical
Environment), which aims to combine state-of-the-art technologies
and innovative solutions into an integrated framework, designed to
enable more effective health management.
Over the first two years of the three-year project, Dr Maharatna
and his colleagues will develop advanced ultra low-power signal
processing algorithms and circuits embedded within the sensors to
create intelligent medical sensors with decision-making capability.
During the final year of the project, the team will then use the
technology to test approximately 400 people (200 in Southampton and
200 in Rome) from a high-risk heart disease group.
“One of the major technical issues when we deploy these sensors
is that they need to be wearable, low-power and work in noisy
environments 24 hours a day,” said Dr Maharatna. “Our task is to
develop new ultra low-power algorithms and corresponding circuits,
so that the technology will make it possible for a patient’s GP to
be alerted at any point of time through the patient’s device if
medical assistance is needed.”