An Audio-Based Method for Assessing Proper Usage of Dry Powder Inhalers

Athina-Chara Eleftheriadou, Anastasios Vafeiadis, Antonios Lalas, Konstantinos Votis, Dimitrios Tzovaras
2020 Applied Sciences  
Critical technique errors are very often performed by patients in the use of Dry Powder Inhalers (DPIs) resulting in a reduction of the clinical efficiency of such medication. Those critical errors include: pure inhalation, non-arming of the device, no exhalation before or after inhalation, and non-holding of breath for 5–10 s between inhalation and exhalation. In this work, an audio-based classification method that assesses patient DPI user technique is presented by extracting the the
more » ... ng the the non-silent audio segments and categorizing them into respiratory sounds. Twenty healthy and non-healthy volunteers used the same placebo inhaler (Bretaris Genuair Inhaler) in order to evaluate the performance of the algorithm. The audio-based method achieved an F1-score of 89.87% in classifying sound events (Actuation, Inhale, Button Press, and Exhale). The significance of the algorithm lies not just on automatic classification but on a post-processing step of peak detection that resulted in an improvement of 5.58% on the F1-score, reaching 94.85%. This method can provide a clinically accurate assessment of the patient's inhaler use without the supervision of a doctor.
doi:10.3390/app10196677 fatcat:hwjsm5mokbecfi3ahmosl7recm