While digital stethoscopes are easy to use and enable recording the diagnostic signals to external storage, the process of manually choosing the points on the patient’s body at which stethoscope measurements are to be taken is the same for analog and digital stethoscopes. This can be inefficient and suboptimal in terms of acquiring the most suitable and useful auscultatory data. This disclosure describes techniques to augment a digital stethoscope to perform spatial auscultatory imaging via simultaneous localization and mapping (SLAM) techniques enabled by a camera and inertial measurement unit (IMU) on the digital stethoscope. The SLAM techniques provide the digital stethoscope with spatial anchoring based on the position and pose of the stethoscope obtained with six degrees of freedom (6DOF) from a localization stack, combined with the rough contours of the human body determined simultaneously via a mapping stack. The auscultatory measurements obtained at each point during the examination session can then be combined, processed, and reported in a spatially relevant way, such as a visual projection on a 3D template of the human body.
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Shin, D, "Augmenting Digital Stethoscopes for Spatial Auscultatory Imaging", Technical Disclosure Commons, (February 23, 2023)