Have you ever gone to the doctor, only to be disappointed that they were unable to come up with the correct diagnosis? Often times, figuring out what's wrong requires loads of tests that are sometimes painful. Not to mention, the amount of money you have to pay for each of those visits.
But what if there were an easier way? What if there was a device out there that could test for diseases without being invasive?
Well, it looks like there is. Or, at least, there will be very soon. Earlier this year, researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, and Stanford University, have developed a new sensor that could analyze your sweat for potential problems. And now, researchers at Eindhoven University are taking that development even further, by creating a flexible microchip that can do the same thing, and is battery free.
Much like your blood, the sweat you produce can tell doctors a lot about your overall health. Things like abnormal saline and acidity levels can be signs of skin diseases, and sodium and potassium levels that are too high or too low are an indication of your hydration level.
Although it's not a wearable gadget yet, this microchip appears to be headed in the right direction, and could eventually transform the health industry. Its functionality was inspired by the process of osmosis - or, in other words, the process of absorption. However, it's much more complex. The chip uses laser technology to make micro-channels in a flexible plastic that permits sweat to be absorbed at a regular rate.
The overall design functions much like your capillary system, where the moisture from your sweat is pumped through the micro-channels for analysis.