Surveys & Screening Tools

Improving Patient Care

Detection, monitoring, and prevention are all key in developing effective technologies that serve the population well. Emory’s OTT has several surveys and screening tools that will give healthcare providers state-of-the-art information while providing data to make future research and treatments more effective.

Children

Pulse Ox Tool: Interpreting and Qualifying Newborn Pulse Oximetry Data
Oxygenation is a vital life process, often used as an indicator of newborn health. Emory researchers have developed software capable of analyzing data from pulse oximetry, a tool commonly used to measure blood oxygenation. This software, available through a website and a mobile application, provides rapid analysis of pulse oximetry readings and directs the physician as to whether the reading warrants further investigation. (Techid: 12108; view our technology brief)

Questionnaires for Assessing the Effect of Visual Impairment on Quality of Life and Function in Children
Roughly 5 million children in the U.S.—6.8%—suffer from some type of visual impairment. A new survey, developed by Sheila Angeles-Han, MD, of Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, evaluates the effect these visual impairments have on the quality of life of children and adolescents. Current surveys are targeted towards adults and contain questions that may not be applicable to children. This new technology includes a survey composed of age-appropriate questions and can be used in conjunction with clinical exams to better asses the quality of life and function of children with visual impairments. (Techid: 11016; view our technology brief)

SABI: Survey for Adolescent Bullying and Isolation
Taaha Shakir, MD, of the Pediatric Emergency Department at Emory, has noticed a trend amongst his patients. After working with several adolescents who tried to kill themselves due to bullying on social media, he created a survey tool called SABI (Survey for Adolescent Bullying and Isolation) to assess the stressors created by social media on adolescents. Shakir administered the survey to his patients. Although a high percentage of respondents reported experiencing stress related to social media, only 8% have thought about stopping its use. He hopes to broaden the scope of the survey to include more factors. (Techid: 15091; view our technology brief)

Software

Algorithm and Software Application for the Diagnosis of Adverse Reactions to Blood Transfusion
Because of the complicated and inexact nature of the diagnosis of adverse reactions to blood transfusions, there has been a growing need in the US to create a user-friendly analytic tool—up to 2010, the US was the only developed country without an established method to track these reactions. John Roback, MD, PhD, and Geoffrey Smith, MD, developed a web and mobile application including a set of easily accessible questions resulting in accurate diagnoses of adverse reactions, based on protocols from the National Healthcare Safety Network. This innovation allows researchers to compile data nationally and internationally to obtain more exact results and to track changes in reaction demographics, including the detection of novel viruses or infectious agents. (Techid: 14022; view our technology brief)

Breast Cancer Genetics Referral Screening Tool (B-RST)
During her doctorate research, Cecelia Bellcross,PhD, director of the Genetic Counseling Training Program at Emory University, noticed that physicians and clinical providers had difficulty referring appropriate cancer patients for genetic counseling. She created the B-RST screening tool, which is now used throughout the world. One of the two screening tools recommended by the USPSTF, B-RST uses a series of 6 simple questions about personal and family history to identify individuals at risk for Hereditary Breast and Ovarian Cancer (HBOC). The test can easily be completed from work or home, and the algorithm can also be integrated into a healthcare provider’s electronic record system. (Techid: 16093; view our feature; view our technology brief)

Cluster Fix: Software for Eye Motion Tracking
Eye motion tracking is a critical tool used to develop marketing materials, to design user-friendly software interfaces, and to diagnose neurological diseases such as Alzheimer’s and ADHD. However, current tracking technologies often rely on inaccurate models of velocity and acceleration, resulting in erroneous data. Cluster Fix, a new eye-tracking algorithm designed by researchers at Emory University, relies on a statistical tool called k-cluster analysis. This technique combines high-precision measurements of eye velocity, acceleration, distance, rotation, and global and local scan paths to study visual response to stimuli. (Techid: 13098; view our technology brief)

Diagnosing Anemia: A Non-invasive, Image-based, Smartphone App
Anemia is a common condition in which patients experience low levels of hemoglobin in the bloodstream, often resulting in extreme fatigue and other complications. Currently, anemia is diagnosed and monitored by a blood draw and analysis, a lengthy process that requires multiple professionals and costly equipment. Emory researchers have designed a smartphone application which detects hemoglobin levels by scanning fingernail bed coloration. The application considers several contributing factors, such as lighting and skin tone, before producing a quantitative analysis of hemoglobin levels. This method represents a non-invasive and affordable tool for patients and doctors to use in diagnosis and monitoring of anemia. (Techid: 15109; view our technology brief)

Mobile Application for Remote Screening of Abdominal Pain
Abdominal pain can occur from a variety of causes, ranging from as inconsequential as gas to as severe as appendicitis. Currently, the only form of assessing pain and its cause is a physical exam. However, this requires an office visit that is sometimes restricted due to cost or travel ability. Emory University researchers have designed a smartphone application which allows a physician to direct the patient to remotely conduct a self-palpitation with the smartphone. Accelerometers within the smartphone guide the patient’s movements, and the patient records his pain response, sending it to the physician for analysis. (Techid: 16148; view our technology brief)

Software for the Visualization of Patient Satisfaction Data
In response to a need for software that more effectively displays results from patient satisfaction surveys, researchers at Emory developed a technology that presents raw survey data in a manner that is quicker and simpler to understand. The technology displays relationships between data in novel and beneficial ways, and allows healthcare providers to better visualize strengths and weaknesses, as well as monitor improvements in patient satisfaction. (Techid: 10109; view our technology brief)

Strategy for Off-Site Rapid Triage (SORT): An Assessment for Influenza Pandemics
In an average year, 500,000 deaths worldwide occur due to influenza. Such a large number of cases can create a burden on the healthcare system, also increasing contact between individuals and increasing the likelihood of viral transmission—ironically turning hospitals and emergency rooms into prime locations for flu transmission. To alleviate some of this burden, researchers at Emory developed a versatile screening tool that can be used online, over the phone, or in person to assess severity and potential risk of death in flu patients. (Techid: 10012; view our feature; view our technology brief)

Patient Quality of Life

ELWAF Scale: Emory Living with Atrial Fibrillation Quality of Life Scale
One third of hospital admissions due to cardiac rhythm irregularities are due to atrial fibrillation. Although many of these patients suffer from a reduced quality of life, various treatments strategies can make great improvements. While current scales only assess the actual fibrillation episodes, a new technology developed by researchers at Emory assesses the impact of atrial fibrillation on patients’ quality of life. The scale, extremely receptive to detecting changes in people, examines physical, emotional, psychological and social parameters and can be used during treatment or clinical trials, as well as by other professional organizations. (Techid: 08050; view our technology brief)

Quality of Life Instruments
Current treatments for many skin disorders are insufficient, and these disorders can cause significant quality of life issues—especially since many symptoms are embarrassing or stressful. Suephy Chen, MD, has developed three instruments to measure the effect of specific skin diseases on a patient’s quality of life. RosaQoL, ItchyQol, and Scalpdex, Quality of Life Instruments specific for Rosacea, Pruritus and Scalp Dermatitis, respectively, measure specific issues such as embarrassment, physical pain and social stressors. By quantifying these parameters, health providers will be able to provide accurate measures of disease burden in affected patients and will also be able to more accurately measure a patient’s response to treatment. (Techids: 05067, 06082, 06083; view our previous feature and find technology briefs).