Betty Onuwa Agbons
Typhoid fever remains a major health problem in developing countries: According to the World Health Organisation, there are 21 Million cases worldwide and 222,000 typhoid-related deaths occurring annually . Mobile monitoring systems have been proposed for observing patient’s physiological signals; these hardware and software solutions are broadly categorised as Healthcare Sensor Networks (HSNs). Since no two patients are alike with regards to biometric parameters and access to healthcare professionals can be difficult because of geography or scarcity of resources, monitoring must be observed in situ. Various serological and culture diagnostic tests for enteric fever exist, including the Widal test , TUBEX , ELISA  and the Gold Standard Blood Culture test . The limitations of these existing conventional tests include lack of speed, sensitivity, and specificity, ambiguity in the classification of symptoms, diagnosis by inexperienced healthcare workers and the fact that they are predominantly clinic-based tests. Critical to typhoid care is outpatient support after the completion of courses of antibiotics, and the two to three-week reoccurrence period is crucial in aftercare. Our research is designed for patients during this period. In this paper, we propose a mobile-based monitoring methodology, which uses vital signs monitoring apparatus, which is configured to recognise the characteristics of typhoid recurrence. Key to our design is the implementation of sensors for body temperature monitoring and physiological testing through galvanic skin response (GSR), electrocardiographic testing (ECG) and electromyography (EMG). The paper introduces an invaluable tool for (i) software programmers and algorithm designers working with biometric HSNs and (ii) practitioners working in public health monitoring and disease prevention.
Click here to read the article, published in JMIR Publications.