New app can quickly detect Parkinson’s disease, severe COVID from people’s voices: Newsdrum

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Melbourne, Oct 6 (PTI) Researchers have developed a new smartphone app that can accurately and quickly detect Parkinson’s disease and severe COVID-19 using only people’s voice recordings.

The artificial intelligence (AI) enabled app records a person’s voice and takes just 10 seconds to reveal if they may have Parkinson’s disease and should be referred to a neurologist.

“Early detection, diagnosis and treatment could help manage these diseases, and therefore it is essential to make screening faster and more accessible,” said the study’s lead researcher, Dinesh Kumar, of the University. RMIT.

“This research will enable a non-contact, easy-to-use, low-cost test that can be performed routinely anywhere in the world, where clinicians can monitor their patients remotely,” Kumar said.

According to the researchers, the app could also promote a community-wide testing program, reaching people who would not otherwise seek treatment before it is too late.

Research results are published in IEEE Journal of Translational Engineering in Health and Medicine, IEEE Access and in Computers in Biology and Medicine.

The voice of people with Parkinson’s disease changes due to a combination of three symptoms: rigidity, tremors and sluggishness.

Expert clinicians can identify these symptoms, but this assessment can be difficult due to the large natural differences in people’s voices.

Kumar said previous attempts to develop a computerized voice assessment to detect Parkinson’s disease had been inaccurate because of these significant differences in people’s voices.

The researchers used voice recordings of people with Parkinson’s disease and a controlled group of so-called healthy people saying three sounds – A, O and M.

“These sounds allow for more accurate disease detection,” Kumar added.

“In patients with symptoms of lung disease due to COVID-19, there is also voice change due to lung infection,” he said.

The researchers noted that due to the large differences in people’s voices, lung disease is difficult to recognize in its early stages.

This limitation can be overcome with the choice of these same three sounds and the AI ​​analysis method developed by the researchers.

Before being used, the system is trained to identify the disease. Once trained, it performs instant voice analysis.

The software then compares the results with existing samples of voices from people with Parkinson’s disease and those without.

Co-researcher Quoc Cuong Ngo, from RMIT’s School of Engineering, said the new technology was faster and better than any similar AI-based approach.

“Our screening test app can measure, with great precision, how the voice of someone with Parkinson’s disease or someone at high risk of hospitalization due to COVID-19 is different from healthy people,” he said.

Parkinson’s disease is a degenerative brain disease that can be difficult to diagnose because symptoms vary from person to person.

Common symptoms include slow movements, tremors, stiffness, and imbalance. Currently, the disease is diagnosed through an evaluation by a neurologist which can take up to 90 minutes. PTI KRS SAR SAR


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