"Play Doctor with the ‘Smart Stethoscope’"

Researchers from the Children’s Hospital, University of Colorado Health Sciences Center and University of Colorado at Boulder are developing a "smart" stethoscope. Artificial neural networks may be able to process and classify heart murmurs from an electronic stethoscope into normal and pathological with a 100% sensitivity and specificity, according to a new report in the June 5 issue of "Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association." If the results are confirmed in on-going studies, the new technology will allow for large-scale inexpensive screening of congenital heart disease. This exhibit describes the on-going research project and allows the public to "play doctor" where they listen and try to diagnose different types of heart murmurs.

A heart murmur is an extra heart sound in addition to the normally heard first and second heart sounds. An innocent heart murmur means there is no heart defect and the heart is normal. Up to 77-95% of the pediatric population have heart murmurs, most are innocent. Less than 1% of infants and children have heart disease.

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