Feeling Sick? Text Your Doctor and Get Diagnosed

For those who live in big city centers or the suburbs know that accessing a doctor is never a problem.

However, for those living in remote regions the story is a much different one: getting to a doctor can, at most times, be next to impossible.

Researchers at Florida Atlantic University (FAU) however have invented a very unique smart phone app that will finally make health care far more available for those living in isolated areas.

Photo: Florida Atlantic University/2015: Florida Atlantic University researchers have created an innovative biosensing platform.Photo: Florida Atlantic University/2015: Florida Atlantic University researchers have created an innovative biosensing platform.

Their new invention will be a real game changer for the world of medicine as we know it.

You see the team of researchers just created an innovative biosensing platform.

All a person has to do is place a small level of saliva or blood sample on a tiny piece of film that is made out of cellulose paper and which is covered in a lightly formed-coated flexible plastic.

Through the use of a free app on a smartphone, a person then simply snaps a picture of the film and messages it to a doctor. Within no time a doctor will be able to diagnose a patient and text the results right back to them.

The film can immediately identify a virus or bacteria, such HIV, E-coli, and Staphylococcus aureas, among others.

The research team’s invention and research has just been published in the latest issue of Scientific Reports.

Photo: Florida Atlantic University/2015: The film can immediately identify a virus or bacteria, such HIV, E-coli, and Staphylococcus aureas, among others.Photo: Florida Atlantic University/2015: The film can immediately identify a virus or bacteria, such HIV, E-coli, and Staphylococcus aureas, among others.

“There is a dire need for robust, portable, disposable and inexpensive biosensing platforms for clinical care, especially in developing countries with limited resources,” says Waseem Asghar, who is a senior researcher at FAU.

“The future of diagnostics and health monitoring will have potentially cell-phone based or portable readers sipping saliva or blood and continuously monitoring human health taking it way beyond where we are with counting steps today,” adds Utkan Demirci, who is also part of the research team. 

The film, which is disposable, and app are very inexpensive to make and will certainly help patients living in remote areas, mainly those in developing countries.

So, while this new technology will be a major benefit for patients in more isolated areas, some wonder how else this technology can be utilized in for other purposes.

The research team suggests that it could also be used in other investigations that involve environmental monitoring, food safety and even distance drug development.