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Objective Recognition Of Cough-Sound As Biomarker For Aerial Pollutants

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan

Citation:  Paper number  024072,  2002 ASAE Annual Meeting . (doi: 10.13031/2013.9334) @2002
Authors:   A. Van Hirtum, D. Berckmans
Keywords:   air quality, sound-analysis as biomarker, cough, respiratory health and comfort, personalized and room-ventilation, aerial pollutants

The relation of air quality and respiratory health and comfort in man and animal is widely shown. In general a state of respiratory discomfort in every day indoor and outdoor life is prevailed by an increase in acoustic audible symptoms. The general concept of sound-analysis as objective contactless non-invasive biomarker for aerial pollution is studied on free field cough-sound of 12 Belgian Landrace piglets. A citric acid induced cough-sound recognition-algorithm with recognition rate of 95% is applied to cough-sounds registered in presence of distinct types of aerial pollutants: irritating gas (ammonia), respirable particulars (dust) and climate factors (temperature). The recognition-performance for all aerial pollutants obtained > 90% and maintained 94% on average. Therefore it is concluded that sound-analysis allows an effective biomarker for all 3 types of aerial pollution. The generality of the biomarker is hypothesized to be due to the common mechanism involved in protective cough which will stand as long as no physical changes to the state of the respiratory system occur. As a consequence it is suggested to imply sound-analysis as a biomarker for the respiratory state into room- or personalized- ventilation-control to improve respiratory comfort affected by aerial pollutants.

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