Researchers at École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) have developed a microfluidic device that’s able to measure glucose, lactate, bilirubin, calcium, and potassium in real time directly from a drainage tube. Embedded with a Bluetooth radio, the device streams readings to a nearby tablet or smartphone for live review at any time, hopefully making regular manual draws a thing of the past.
The team EPFL team claims that the technology can measure up to 40 different molecules at the same time. If true and the technology proves itself in clinical trials, management of patients in the ICU and others bedridden in the hospital should be considerably easier on the nurses and lead to quicker reaction when levels of various substances change abruptly.
The microfluidic device was presented at the ongoing Biomedical Circuits and Systems Conference in Atlanta.