Why do we need a HeartSentry?
The ubiquitous acoustic stethoscope has been found to be almost useless in a noisy environment such as an emergency room, an ambulance or a medical evacuation aircraft. An acoustic stethoscope also required direct skin contact which may not be possible or advisable.
What does the HeartSentry look like?
The HeartSentry provides a non-contact way of monitoring heart sounds by detecting the vibration of the chest wall. Its output is substantially the same as that of an acoustic stethoscope, except that the HeartSentry will work in a very noisy environment. A prototype HeartSentry stehoscope for use on a medical evaluation helicopter is shown in the picture.
How well does the HeartSentry work in a noisy environment?
The phonocardiogram on the rght illustrated that the HeartSentry stethoscope is almost completely immune to environmental noise. By electronically shifting low frequency hear sounds to higher more audible frequency, the radar stethoscope can also be of value to hearing impaired physicians.
What is the development status of the HeartSentry?
Seven HearthSentry stethoscopes have been built. Three units have been provided to physicians for evaluation. An evaluation in a realistic, noisy medical emergency environment remains to be made.