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The technology uses transdermal optical imaging, which is able to visualize and measure blood-flow changes under facial skin. | Photo source Nuralogix Website

A selfie video that can measure blood pressure

Healthcare & Wellbeing

Transdermal optical imaging can analyse a 30-second video of a person's face to measure blood pressure

Spotted: Kang Lee, professor of applied psychology at the University of Toronto, has discovered a way to measure blood pressure using a phone’s camera. The technology uses transdermal optical imaging, which is able to visualise and measure blood-flow changes under facial skin. 

Facial skin is, by nature, translucent. When light reaches the face, it penetrates the skin and reaches the red blood cells underneath it. Red light is then reflected back and captured by the optical sensor on a smartphone.

“From the video captured by the technology, you can see how the blood flows in different parts of the face, and through this ebb and flow of blood in the face, you can get a lot of information,” Lee said.

Initial research has shown this new process to be up to 96 percent as accurate as traditional testing methods. But more research will need to take place before its use becomes widespread. Lee’s startup, Nuralogix, already has one app on the market, which can measure stress levels and resting heart rate based on a 30-second video of a person’s face. 

Springwise has spotted other innovations aiming to make self-diagnosing easier and more reliable, including an app-based home eye test. 

Email: kang.lee@utoronto.ca

Website: nuralogix.ai

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