MouthLab’s 3D Printed Diagnostic Gadget — The First Step Towards a Tricorder?

Share this Article

m1You know that our society is experiencing exponential technological progress when we begin comparing certain new technologies to those found in the hit series Star Trek. 3D printing is already being called an early form of the replicator from the series, the device which is able to replicate almost any object on a whim. In fact MakerBot co-founder Bre Pettis even named his desktop 3D printers after the Star Trek machine.

3D printers themselves are not the only Star Trek-like gadgets we are seeing. In fact, 3D printing is an enabler of a device which immediately brings to mind another gadget from the series, the medical tricorder. For those who are not fans of the series, the medical tricorder was a sophisticated devices which doctors would use to quickly and accurately diagnose their patients. Instead of relying on stethoscopes, blood pressure monitors, blood tests, etc., the tricorder could record all of this information within seconds. Sound far fetched? Well, you may want to begin opening up your mind to the fact that such a device may one day be entirely possible.m4

Engineers at Johns Hopkins University, led by Dr. Gene Fridman, an assistant professor of biomedical engineering, are working on a 3D printed device which is able to read key vital signs of a patient within seconds. The device utilizes a sensory thumb pad and mouthpiece to rapidly obtain information related to the patient’s blood pressure, blood oxygen level, heartbeat pattern, heart rate, body temperature and more. The thumb pad has a tiny pulse oximeter which measures the blood oxygen level, while the mouthpiece can measure a variety of other vital signs by utilizing sophisticated algorithms and multiple sensors.

The research has led to the formation of a company called Multisensor Diagnostics and the team is calling the device MouthLab. Although still in a prototype stage, many of its m3components have been 3D printed, saving the company time and money during the development process.

“We see it as a ‘check-engine’ light for humans. It can be used by people without special training at home or in the field,” explained Fridman. “It can gather more data than is typically collected during a medical assessment in an ambulance, emergency room, doctor’s office or patient’s home.”

The goal currently is to enable doctors and patients to measure their vitals within just 10 seconds by holding the device in front of them and breathing normally. The production version of the device will display the patient’s vitals on a screen built into the device itself while also sending the data to a laptop or into the cloud for monitoring.

“MouthLab will be able to make those with no medical training make more intelligent decisions about their own healthcare,” explained Fridman. “MouthLab will improve healthcare in the underdeveloped regions, it will reduce the number of emergency room visits and it will improve therapy outcomes by catching problems early on.”

While the tricorder was certainly a much more capable and sophisticated device, ultimately MouthLab may one day progress to a point, by utilizing new algorithms and sensors, to make that fictional device an eventual reality. What do you guys think? Let us know in the MouthLab 3D Printed Tricorder forum thread on 3DPB.com. Also be sure to check out the video below describing this device in more detail:

Share this Article


Recent News

Stratasys Lays off 10 Percent of Workers

Anouk Wipprecht’s 3D-Printed Proximity Dresses Are Perfect for Social Distancing



Categories

3D Design

3D Printed Art

3D Printed Food

3D Printed Guns


You May Also Like

Imperial College London: 3D Printing Improved Biocompatible Implant Packaging

Cristina Gentili recently presented a thesis, ‘3D Printed Instrumented Packaging for Implantable Devices,’ to the Centre of Bio-Inspired Technology at the Imperial College London. While there is much research focused...

For a Personalized Look, Try a 3D Printed Pompillon Bow Tie

There’s something fantastically dapper about a bow tie, and a 3D printed version definitely takes this fashionable look the extra mile. Ties and bow ties, along with ascots and scarves,...

$50 Open-Source Colorimeter is Remarkable in Comparison to Commercial Models

Researchers from Michigan Technological University are applying chemistry to 3D printing, detailing their recent study in ‘Open-Source Colorimeter.’ A basic sensor, the colorimeter is made up of a simple light...

3D Printing and Mass Customization, Hand in Glove Part V

We know that we are using far too many materials in a quest for consumption, could recycle them and could use these recycled goods in high valued materials but why...


Shop

View our broad assortment of in house and third party products.


Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Join our mailing list to receive the latest news and updates from our 3DPrint.com.

You have Successfully Subscribed!