Automatically Sensing Fecal Incontinence in Bed

Period of Performance: 07/01/1999 - 04/30/2000


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Augmentech, Inc.
Pittsburgh, PA 15213
Principal Investigator


DESCRIPTION (Adapted from the investigators' abstract): The investigators will develop an automatic odor sensing system that can sample air from the vicinity of the bed and automatically signal a caregiver when the occupant of the bed has had an episode of fecal incontinence. In nursing homes substantial proportions of frail elderly residents are incontinent of stool, this system will facilitate better clinical care at reduced cost. Rather than rely on costly periodic bed checks that disrupt sleep at night, but only occasionally find fecal matter from an episode of incontinence, this system will enable timely care for residents who cannot be relied upon to self report incidents. The results will be better care at lower labor costs. Better care will result from reduced sleep fragmentation that is a consequence of 2-hour continence checks and by assuring that the patients average less time lying on their feces, which can lead to perineal dermatitis and skin ulceration while waiting for care. PROPOSED COMMERCIAL APPLICATION: NOT AVAILABLE