New evidence shows that an "electronic nose" containing an array of gas sensors may have the ability to identify asthma in patients.
Researchers from Italy compared the diagnostic performance of the electronic nose with lung function tests and fraction of exhaled nitric oxide (FeNO) in seven patients with asthma and seven healthy subjects. For each person, the electronic nose analysis was performed on total exhaled air and alveolar air.
Results showed that the diagnostic performance for the electronic nose, FeNO, and lung function testing was 87.5 percent, 79.2 percent, and 70.8 percent, respectively. Overall, the electronic nose analysis obtained the best results when performed on alveolar air and in combination with FeNO.
Researchers conclude that the electronic nose discriminates between patients with asthma and healthy patients, with increased diagnostic performance when combined with FeNO.
This article is published in the April issue of CHEST, the peer-reviewed journal of the American College of Chest Physicians.
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