New Smartphone Attachment Can Perform Routine Kidney Testing

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Researchers at the University of California have developed a new kidney testing device that can transmit data to healthcare professionals using a smartphone attachment. The new item could prove especially useful for diabetes patients who often require frequent doctor visits for tests on kidney functionality.

The item weighs about one-third of a pound and tests for levels of albumin present in a patient's urine. The protein is commonly found in blood but can indicate kidney damage when found in a patient's urine. The device tests albumin levels by beaming a small, visible light through both a urine sample and control liquid. The results can then be sent automatically using an iOS or Android application.

"This automated albumin testing tool running on a smartphone could be useful for early diagnosis of kidney disease or for monitoring of chronic patients, especially those suffering from diabetes, hypertension, and/or cardiovascular diseases," the researchers explain.

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