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Bluetooth, what a brainy idea!

16 Aug 05

Scientists hope a portable brain scanner that uses Bluetooth radio technology could lead to stroke victims receiving treatment much more quickly.
The University College London team hope the device could be used onboard ambulances to diagnose people thought to have had a stroke.

Currently stroke patients have to wait until they arrive at hospital to have a scan before receiving treatment.

The scanner would send the images via Bluetooth - which swaps data via short-wave radio - to a computer onboard the ambulance to allow paramedics to diagnose the cause of the stroke, or send it to consultants at the hospital if they are unable to identify it.

A&E consultant Martin Shalley, president of the British Association for Emergency Medicine, said: "The quicker you can make the diagnosis the better. This sounds like it has great potential.

"Even if a diagnosis could not be made, just having the scan ready when the patient arrives at hospital would be a big step.

"Arranging a hospital scan can lose you valuable time."

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