DEC 21, 2019 10:18 PM PST

New Device Helps With Swallowing Disorders

WRITTEN BY: Nouran Amin

A wearable monitoring device can provide relief for individuals with swallowing disorders. The device was developed to be affordable when hitting the market and will make treatments easier. The device is ready to be commercialized by Georgia A. Malandraki, an associate professor of speech, language, and hearing sciences in Purdue University’s College of Health and Human Sciences, and Chi Hwan Lee, an assistant professor of biomedical engineering and mechanical engineering in Purdue’s College of Engineering, which can make the product quickly available among healthcare providers and clinics.

 

 

“We want to provide a reliable, patient-friendly and affordable way to treat the millions of people with swallowing disorders,” Malandraki said. “Many devices to help these people are expensive, not able to be taken home and not accessible in many rural areas.”

The device is a skin-mountable sensor sticker that attaches to the neck area and has small cables connected to a wireless transmitter unit. The sensor measures and records muscle activity associated with swallowing and information is later sent to the doctors for further analysis. They are designed to be used roughly ten times before thrown way and replaced by another, that way it remains inexpensive.

Findings were published in Science Advances.

“Our device is unique in that we specifically created it to work well with the small and intricate muscles associated with swallowing events,” Lee said. “The sensor sticker is stretchable and flexible to work well with the skin and curvilinear head and neck shape, while the connected unit has electronic chips and more rigid components.”

Source: Purdue University

About the Author
BS/MS
Nouran is a scientist, educator, and life-long learner with a passion for making science more communicable. When not busy in the lab isolating blood macrophages, she enjoys writing on various STEM topics.
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