Inexpensive, hand held early warning and detection system for preeclampsia
Preeclampsia is a major cause of maternal and neonatal death, particularly in low-income and developing countries. When treated properly the mortality rate is low. Unfortunately many women in low-income countries do not have ready access to proper care. Our research has shown that we can reliably detect preeclampsia 10-12 weeks before the onset of symptoms. We propose to create an inexpensive, easy-to-use, handheld system that detects the likelihood of the future onset of preeclampsia. A 50-patient clinical study will validate its effectiveness. Pregnant women can be scanned non-invasively and extremely inexpensively (no disposables required) in 5-10 minutes. There are no low-cost, non-invasive products available for detecting preeclampsia before onset. Biomarkers have shown promise for this purpose, but are expensive and difficult to evaluate in developing countries. Our innovation is the integration of inexpensive ECG and photoplethysmography sensors that can be embedded into a single wrist strap. The sensors connect to a smart phone for processing, data aggregation, and communication.