The current diagnosis of TB requires sputum samples, which can be challenging to obtain and analyze, especially in remote and low-income areas. The use of a smartphone application to monitor coughs could provide an innovative solution to this challenge.
According to a recent study published in the International Journal of Tuberculosis and Lung Disease, coughing patterns could be used to diagnose TB more accurately and efficiently. The study explored the use of an application from Hyfe Research to monitor cough patterns in people with presumptive TB in five countries (Uganda, South Africa, the Philippines, Vietnam, and India). The researchers conducted 14 days of smartphone-based longitudinal continuous cough monitoring, comparing patterns of cough between people with microbiologically confirmed TB, clinical TB, and other respiratory diseases.
The Hyfe Research application analyzed the cough sounds and generated a report on the cough characteristics, such as the cough count, duration, and frequency. The study found that the application could distinguish between people with TB and those with other respiratory diseases.
The study’s findings suggest that monitoring coughs with a smartphone application could be a valuable tool for TB diagnosis and treatment. The Hyfe Research application’s non-invasive, low-cost, and easily accessible approach makes it a promising tool for TB diagnosis and treatment, especially in resource-limited settings. However, as with any new technology, there are concerns about data privacy and security that need to be addressed.
Further research is needed to validate the application’s efficacy in different populations and settings.