Google Glass app could do remote diagnoses, save lives in remote areas

Feb. 27, 2014 at 5:33 PM

LOS ANGELES, Feb. 27 (UPI) -- The Google Glass -- eyewear with computer capabilities -- could diagnose illness and save lives, especially in isolated locations, a U.S. researcher says.

Scientists at UCLA say they're developing a Google Glass app that would take a picture of a diagnostic test strip and send it for analysis to more powerful computers in other parts of the world, which would rapidly beam back a diagnostic report to the user.

"It's very important to detect emerging public health threats early, before an epidemic arises and many lives are lost," UCLA researcher Aydogan Ozcan said. "With our app for Google Glass and our remote computing and data analysis power, we can deliver a one-two punch -- provide quantified biomedical test results for individual patients, plus analyze all those data to determine whether an outbreak is imminent."

If the user is in a remote area without WiFi, they can connect their Google Glass to a smartphone to transmit the data along with geographical information for disease tracking, the researchers said.

In pilot tests, the team successfully used the app with HIV and prostate-specific antigen (known as PSA) diagnostic assays, saying results were available within eight seconds for each individual test.

Because Google Glass is hands-free, busy technicians could quickly go through many patient tests in a short period, they said.

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