Earlier this month, researchers at a medical conference on respiratory diseases in Stockholm, reported that MP3 players with built in microphones are better than traditional stethoscopes.
In addition to picking up many respiratory noises better than the stethoscope, they have the added advantage of being able to record the sounds they’re listening to. These digital sound files can then be scrutinised and sent to others for a second opinion, as well as stored for later reference or comparison.
If this is accepted by the medical fraternity, it won’t be long before computer programmes are written to do the analysis of the breathing sounds automatically (similar to how blood tests are now done by machine, and not by lab coated technicians peering into microscopes). This is one step closer to complete home diagnosis, and just another reason why doctors need to understand (like everyone else in every other industry) that these days your value lies less and less in what you sell (or what you do), and more and more in who you are, the connections you make, and how you do what you do.

TomorrowToday Global