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According to Edward Simmonds, Alcatel-Lucent's applications business development director, traditional stethoscopes are 20 years old and haven't seen much evolution. Diagnosis using analog stethoscopes is "very subjective", he said, with the older models making it difficult to filter out ambient noise.
This Alcatel electronic stethoscope measures heart readings and also picks up ambient sound readings using a microphone. These are sent via Bluetooth — the blocky device in the centre enables the Bluetooth — to a device, PC or mobile, which sends the reading to a database. The database then filters out the ambient noise from the heart readings which then can be projected onto a screen, allowing doctors to "see" the beats.
This is a heart reading being transmitted from the stethoscope to an IP telephone. The reading can be recorded and stored for future reference.
Alternatively, doctors can analyse the reading using software. The top graph shows the spectroscopic reading, with the colours representing the energy within the frequencies of the heartbeat.
On the top right-hand side of the screen — the anatomical picture of the heart — doctors can record which part of the heart they were listening to when recording the reading.