By: Azman Zakaria
Photo: Noor Azreen Awang
SERDANG - Concerned by the pain experienced by babies when needles are used to take blood samples to detect jaundice, a researcher from Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) came up with an innovation that enables detection of the illness without any physical contact or painful procedure.
The product, Bilitec (Bilirubin Detector), is designed to measure bilirubin level without blood samples.
Using the 'spectrophotometer' technology in bilitec, bilirubin level is measured by scanning the baby's skin or eyes.
The technology will detect the bilirubin level based on the baby's skin or eye colour thus, reducing the need to extract blood sample for examination or screening purposes.
The researcher, Nadiah Rozlan, an alumnus of the Faculty of Design and Architecture (FRSB), UPM in the field of industrial design, said bilitec was designed so that it can be easily handled by health institutions or parents.
"Its compact and lightweight design makes it easy to hold and use by touch screen. It comes with a mobile app that enables users to record the readings (bilirubin) directly to cloud storage, and the recorded data can be viewed again by doctors or medical personnel as well as parents," she said.
She added that doctors and nurses do not need to write or document the data manually since they are all automatically recorded in the application.
"The examination result is also immediate. Within seconds, it can determine whether or not a baby is suffering from jaundice as opposed to the use of blood sample that requires a doctor's appointment a few days later to find out the result," she said.
She said real-time telehealth services between bilitec operators and doctors could also be carried out through the application which enables communication and monitoring between the two parties to be carried out remotely.
According to her, a study by a doctor at a specialist hospital in Kajang, Selangor, found that between 60 and 70 percent of newborn babies have jaundice. It triggered her interest to make it as the main topic in her final year project at UPM which finally led to the bilitec design.
Nadiah also said that based on her observations, babies whose blood was taken repeatedly in the hands and feet to measure the degree of jaundice would experience trauma due to the pain when blood samples were taken, and the injected area could become bruised or swollen.
"With bilitec, babies will no longer go through such experiences," she said.
She added that research to further improve and develop the product is being carried out.
Bilitec won the Best Internet of Things (IOT) award at this year's Sustainable Environmental Exploration Design (SEED) 2018 exhibition organised by UPM with the collaboration of the Malaysian Design Council (MRM) with a theme, "Industrial Revolution 4.0". Bilitec was also selected to participate in the Sustainable Tropical Environmental Design Exhibition (STEdex) 2018 at Serdang Gallery, UPM. - UPM
Date of Input: 04/12/2018 | Updated: 04/12/2018 | hairul_nizam
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