Technology

This 'Smart toilet' scans poop to detect health issues

This 'Smart toilet' scans poop to detect health issues
Scientists have designed a smart toilet that monitors one’s stool and urine. (Image: Nature)

One’s poop and urine indicate an individual’s health and diet. That is why scientists have developed a sensor package for the toilet that can turn it into a smart toilet with the ability to analyse the faeces and urine allowing you to monitor your health without any extra effort.

They have developed three fully automated toilet modules that can be mounted onto existing toilets — urinalysis, uroflowmetry, and stool analysis — to acquire basic properties such as temporal parameters of urination and defecation, morphology of stool, flow parameters of urination, biochemical constituents of urine of human excreta.

Using this data, the smart toilet has the potential to help diagnose irritable bowel syndrome, benign prostatic hyperplasia and urinary tract infection. To protect the user’s privacy, the initial prototype includes two-factor user identification using flush lever fingerprinting as well as anal-print recognition, which is exactly what it sounds like.

Parts of the smart toilet system

Urinalysis: Researchers integrated a ten-parameter urinalysis test strip into the toilet system to provide qualitative and semi-quantitative analysis of ten biomarkers— erythrocytes, urobilinogen, bilirubin, protein, nitrite, ketones, glucose, pH, specific gravity and leukocytes.

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Uroflowmeter: The computer-vision uroflowmeter uses two high-speed cameras GoPro Hero 7 and GoPro positioned at two fixed locations close to and facing away from the user to record a series of frame of the urine system. It uses the spinning-disk principle to measure the following metrics— voiding time, time to maximum flow, maximum flow rate, average flow rate and total voided volume.

Stool analysis: The stool analysis system of the smart toilet classifies the poop in BSFS that can only be done by visual assessment. The system also keeps record of a user’s defecation timing. All in all, the smart toilet is composed of a pressure sensor, motion sensor, urinalysis strip, stool camera, anus camera, and uroflow camera.

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