Article published by Maria Belen Echeñique, Eduardo Godoy, Rodrigo Cádiz, MICARE adjunct researcher, and Marcelo Andia.
Telemedicine has become increasingly popular due to its convenience and accessibility. However, one of its drawbacks is the difficulty of performing lung and heart auscultation remotely. As a solution, we propose smartphonebased tele-auscultation for capturing lung and heart sounds. We conducted an initial evaluation of these processed sounds by obtaining 10 heart sounds and 20 lung sounds from open-source databases, which were pitch-shifted using algorithms based on Paul’s Stretch and SoundStretch libraries, respectively. These processed audios were validated by 40 final-year medical students using a web survey and conventional headphones and were compared against the original versions.
The results showed that 72% and 80% of responses indicated that clinical information was preserved in the samples of respiratory and heart sounds, respectively.
These findings suggest that pitch-shifted sounds could be potentially used in tele-auscultation devices such as smartphones. However, further research is needed regarding the recording and playback capabilities of smartphones.