For ages, medical doctors have tried to locate the causes of diseases through symptoms described by the patients using clinical examination technics. To find the cause, they have to listen, touch and look at the patient but they often face a major obstacle: the body.
To bypass this barrier, a pioneering physician Laennec made the first successful attempt 200 years ago, inventing the well-known stethoscope –using the sense of hearing to explore organs more deeply. Modern medicine has since brought about bulky and expensive medical imaging devices as powerful tools for complementary examination.
Today using the sense of sight the increasingly low cost of electronic components and more open and collaborative frameworks bringing together communities are rendering these tools more accessible and affordable. This ultrasound lens enables doctors and medical practitioners to immediately explore patients' bodies during clinical examination[A Elezi and al. forthcoming 2018].
Defined as the use of a universal ultra-portable ultrasound imaging or medical visualization tool, intended to accompany health professionals in clinical practice of diagnostic orientation, echo-stethoscopy is primarily aimed at physicians who have never take ultrasound images and who have taken a 48-hour training program to master the gesture and the concept.
We are working closely with physicians who have pionnered, developed and fostered the concept of echostethoscopy for 30 years.
A short history of echo-stethoscopy: the concept began to disseminate when the first portable ultrasound device was released in 1978 [Ligtvoet and al. 1978]. But one had to wait until 2004 to see the concept of echo-stethoscopy recognized as a medical reality [Greenbaum and al. 2004]. After then, bunch of works, [CL Moore and al. 2011], have been done in order to circumscribe the clinical scope of medical usages.
We are currently conducting an extensive literature review to have a global overview of the use of such device. Our goal is to identify 10+ most relevant applications and validate them through clinical trials in collaboration with our partners and experts from the community.
We also raise awareness to medical community to involve them in experimenting with new usages of the device. This is in line with our goal of rendering the devise as universal as possible.
Providing doctors and medical practitioners with a lens inside their patients' bodies, enabling them to pinpoint care – anytime, anywhere for better and faster diagnosis therefore improve healthcare services.