Health

Photonic technologies permit non-invasive detection of diseases.

nanoplus lasers are primarily used in two different detection schemes, in breath analysis as well as in blood analysis through the skin. Depending on the application one or more laser wavelengths may be used.

Selected applications of nanoplus sensing lasers for medical diagnosis include:

Monitoring of breath gas: C2H6 and C2H2
Medical breath analysis considers ethane and acetylene as a biomarkers for asthma, schizophrenia or lung cancer. The research field of breath analysis uses methane as a biomarker for intestinal problems. [10]

Monitoring of breath gas: CO
The relatively new research field of breath analysis defines CO concentration in exhaled breath as a biomarker for e. g. respiratory infections and asthma. [63].

Monitoring of breath gas: NH3
Ammonium is used as a biomarker for helicobacter pylori infections. These infections are responsible for stomach ulcers. Breath analysis diagnoses the disease in a non-invasive way sparing patients a disagreeable gastroscopy. [63]

Monitoring of breath gas: CO2
Helicobacter pylori bacteria cause stomach ulcer. Breath analysis diagnoses such an infection in a non-invasive way replacing disagreeable gastroscopies. It uses the CO2 concentration in exhaled breath as a biomarker. [9,88]

Monitoring of breath gas: NOx
The field of breath analysis considers NOx as a biomarker for asthma and other pulmonary diseases. This new technology becomes more established for clinical applications. It is a cost-effective and non-invasive method of diagnosis and treatment monitoring. [49]

Analysis of surgical smoke:
Surgical smoke occurs during the use of certain surgical instruments, such as lasers, drills or ultrasonic scalpels. It consists of several toxic and carcinogenic gases. Though detected in uncritical concentrations, these gases carry a health risk. Laser based spectroscopy offers a possibility to analyze even lowest exposures. [43]

Monitoring of gas in the lungs and intestines of newborn infants: H2O and O2
Child mortality is high among preterm newborn infants. They are often affected by free gas in lungs and intestines, which may lead to the breakdown of vital organs. The current diagnosis is based on X-ray radiography. According to a study a bed-side, rapid, non-intrusive, and gas-specific technique for in vivo gas sensing would improve diagnosis and enhance the babies' chance of survival. The detection method is based on laser spectroscopy. [51]

Workplace exposure monitoring: CH2O

Formaldehyde has been used in consumer and industrial products since the beginning of the 19th century. Currently the annual formaldehyde production accounts for 21 million tons. About 50 % are processed as adhesives in pressed wood panels. In 2004 formaldehyde has been classified carcinogenic by the International Agency for Research on Cancer. Since then formaldehyde concentrations have been strictly controlled in the production process as well as in the finished product. Laser-based measurement systems are required to detect the maximum levels of 0.01 ppb (USA) and 2 ppb (EU). [9, 22, 78]

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