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Smartphone Game Detects Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

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thumb motion tracking app, illustration

A player's thumb motion is tracked while touching and controlling a rabbit character collecting vegetables.

Credit: Japan Science and Technology Agency

A Japanese research group used a smartphone application, motion analysis, and machine learning to screen for carpal tunnel syndrome. Standard diagnosis of the condition requires expensive devices and specialized skills. The smartphone screening app makes data collection for machine learning easier and more available.

Researchers at Tokyo Medical and Dental University and Keio University developed a game application for smartphones that is played using the thumbs and prepared a program that acquires the trajectory of the thumb during a game play and estimates the possibility of the disease with machine learning. The game can be played in 30 seconds to 1 minute. Results of the approach were equivalent or better than the results of physical examinations by expert orthopedic surgeons.

The research is described in "A Screening Method Using Anomaly Detection on a Smartphone for Patients With Carpal Tunnel Syndrome: Diagnostic Case-Control Study," published in JMIR mHealth and uHealth.

From Japan Science and Technology Agency
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