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We show that a mobile phone can serve as an accurate monitor for several physiological variables, based on its ability to record and analyze the varying color signals of a fingertip placed in contact with its optical sensor. We confirm the accuracy of measurements of breathing rate, cardiac R-R intervals, and blood oxygen saturation, by comparisons to standard methods for making such measurements (respiration belts, ECGs, and pulse-oximeters, respectively). Measurement of respiratory rate uses a previously reported algorithm developed for use with a pulse-oximeter, based on amplitude and frequency modulation sequences within the light signal. We note that this technology can also be used with recently developed algorithms for detection of atrial fibrillation or blood loss.
Date of Publication: Feb. 2012