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Alzheimer disease diagnosed over phone, finds Indian-origin researcher in US

Alzheimer disease diagnosed over phone, finds Indian-origin researcher in US

A study by an Indian-origin researcher Sona Patel can help the doctors diagnose Alzheimer and Parkinson over the phone

Sona Patel, an Indian origin professor at Seton Hall University in New Jersey, US has just received a financial aid of $380,000 for her research on the subject of diagnosing Alzheimer and Parkinson over the phone. The financial grant from the National Institute of Deafness and Communicative Disorders has been initiated to conduct a study on the vocal impacts of the neurological disorder, NJ.com reported.

She said her research would take forward previous studies that indicated differences in voice patterns between normally ageing adults, and those with Parkinson’s disease.

“Your voice is really important,” Patel was quoted as saying.

“You react to (stimuli) with your voice automatically, without even realizing it… now, the question is if we can use (voices) to indicate other neurological disorders,” she said.

The symptoms in the early stages of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease are very similar, according to Patel.

“By the time the disease has progressed enough to be properly diagnosed, there is not much you can do,” she said.

If her study finds changes in voice patterns, Patel said it could be possible to develop non-invasive and less expensive methods to detect whether or not a person in the early stages of a disease has Parkinson’s or Alzheimer’s.

The test, she said, would be simple to administer, and could even potentially be done over the phone.

Patel is currently using electroencephalogram (EEG) and auditory feedback to determine how Alzheimer’s patients respond to various speech tasks, and if their responses differ from those of Parkinson’s patients, as reported by IANS.

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