Phukuy: disposable spirometer project
What is a spirometer?
A spirometer is an electronic device for measuring a patient’s lung volume. Patients have to inhale as deeply as possible and then blow through the mouthpiece. It is widely used in pulmonology to diagnose patients with respiratory diseases, such as tuberculosis or COVID-19.
What problems do pulmonologists face with traditional spirometers?
Spirometers generate aerosols because patients are required to blow; this is currently prohibited so further infections are prevented. Secondly, if patients who recover from COVID have to go to a physician’s office for a spirometry test, they will be at risk of getting infected inside the medical center.
What is the solution provided by the spirometer manufactured at UPC?
First of all, it consists of a low-cost device that patients can take home to monitor their condition. In addition, the device can record the patient’s monitored data and send it to a server so the doctor can visualize the measurements taken by the patient every day. Finally, the data may be recorded to have a data base useful for conducting research. This can allow us to detect what happens with the lung volume of patients who overcome the disease.
What is its contribution to society?
To date, we know very little about COVID-19 and the patients that recovered from the disease. We do not know which other diseases they could be susceptible to; therefore, we want to mass distribute this product so that many patients start sending this information. After several months of testing, we will have on the server a very high amount of data from patients’ lung capacity information; this will be very important for further research and will allow us to learn more about the evolution of the disease.