The overall goal of the proposed research and technology transfer effort is to develop a low-cost, point-of-care, mobile device-based technology for automated identification of Still's murmur, the most common innocent (benign and harmless) heart murmur of childhood. This novel technology could reduce the current rate of over a million children unnecessarily referred to pediatric cardiologists by general physicians each year in the United States. Investigators from Auscultech Dx, a startup company, and Children's National Medical Center will collaborate to begin converting the academic, patent-pending research into a commercial product through this STTR initiative. The three specific aims of the project are to (1) refine and test thoroughly the algorithm for identifying Still's murmur, (2) improve and test smartphone stethoscope, and (3) integrate hardware and software components to develop a fully integrated prototype.
These aims will lead to the development of a fully integrated prototype that records and discriminates pediatric heart murmurs in this Phase I feasibility study. In Phase II, we will continue with prototype improvements and conduct a clinical trial with general physicians, and pursue regulatory and marketing approvals. The successful completion of this feasibility study in Phase I and subsequent clinical testing in Phase II will result in a validated device for identifying Still's murmur in an office setting. Significant reduction in the number of unnecessary referrals will save the healthcare system hundreds of millions of dollars annually; allow pediatric cardiologists to focus on patients with serious conditions; and save children and families from the unnecessary anxiety, inconvenience, and expense of seeing a cardiologist.
Over a million children are referred to pediatric cardiologists by general physicians for the evaluation of Still's murmur, a normal and harmless heart murmur. This project will develop a novel mobile technology for automated recognition of this murmur and reducing the current rate of such unnecessary referrals.