What You Should Know:
– During a press preview event at CES last night, Withings unveiled, U-Scan, a miniaturized urine health lab that will change the way people and health professionals will monitor vitals from the comfort and privacy of their own bathroom.
– U-Scan consists of a technologically advanced pebble-shaped urine analysis reader that sits within the toilet bowl. Its changeable cartridges are designed to assess specific biomarkers without the need for external sample capture or strips. It is simultaneously being developed for the consumer health and professional medical markets.
– The first health professionals are using it to develop noninvasive cancer screening and powering a clinical study to improve the follow-up of patients with cystine renal lithiasis and uric acid renal lithiasis.
U-Scan For Professionals – How it Works
While easy to use, U-Scan overcomes multiple technical and chemical challenges. Developed with in-vitro diagnostic experts, it was four years in the making and resulted in 13 patent application families. As a complete system, U-Scan performs three tasks:
1) Automated Sample Capture – using a sophisticated reader within a toilet bowl
Just 90 mm in diameter, the rechargeable U-Scan reader is engineered to distinguish between external liquid and urine and automatically funnel samples for analysis. Urine flows efficiently to a collection inlet thanks to its pebble-shaped design. A pump is activated when a thermal sensor detects the presence of urine, which starts a sample’s fluidic journey within a microfluidic circuit.
After its collection, the urine sample is injected into a test pod where the chemical reaction is read by an optical module. At the end of each measurement, the circuit returns to the idle position and the remaining liquid is purged through a waste outlet. The system is subsequently cleaned with every flush.
2) Biomarker Analyses – within a miniaturized urine lab tailored to specific use cases
The rotating cylindrical U-Scan cartridge is a tiny chemical assessment chamber containing dozens of miniaturized test pods that can deliver reliable results. When the reader delivers the sample to the injection point U-Scan begins the chemical analysis within moments. It automatically transmits results via Wi-Fi and then rotates the cartridge to expose the next test pod to the injection point.
The module system is purposely designed to allow for bespoke cartridges to be developed as required by use cases.
3) Actionable Data– unlocking new health data streams
The data collected with U-Scan For Professionals can be analyzed and delivered to audiences in a variety of ways depending on the use case.
As the latest device within the Withings ecosystem, U-Scan For Professionals is compatible with Withings RPM, the highly advanced Remote Patient Monitoring solution that places the patient experience at the heart of the telehealth experience. The ability to carry out daily urine analysis greatly increases the health data Withings can offer partners, making it one of the most comprehensive platforms on the market.
Leveraging its API, Withings partners can bring patients’ data to their own environment and offer results or actional advice in their own voice and brand.
Debut in Europe
U-Scan will debut in Europe with two consumer health cartridges, including U-Scan Cycle Sync for women’s monthly cycle tracking and syncing and U-Scan Nutri Balance, a detailed metabolic guide to hydration and nutrition. Withings Health Solutions, the company’s business-to-business division, has launched U-Scan For Professionals to bring this technology to the medical and healthcare industries.