Instead Of A Blood Test, This App Will Be A Great Choice to Diagnose Anemia

Jyotis - Dec 06, 2018

Instead Of A Blood Test, This App Will Be A Great Choice to Diagnose Anemia

A blood test will be no longer necessary to diagnose anemia when this smartphone app comes to light.

Scientists at Emory University in the US have rolled out an unknown app which can diagnose anemia with high accuracy.

A blood test will be no longer necessary when this smartphone app comes to light. To exploiting its features, you need to take photos of patients’ fingernails on a smartphone and let the app check the number of hemoglobin in their blood.


In the journal Nature Communications, Wilbur Lam, the primary scientist of the study, said all the tools used to detect point-of-care anemia need external equipment. Also, they must meet the vital factors like accuracy, invasiveness, and cost.

He made sure that the independent app could reach the same accuracy as the current tests can. Another advantage of the app is that patients don’t need to take blood.

That’s not all. With the app on smartphones, patients who are suffering from chronic anemia can check and monitor their disease more conveniently, as well as count how many times to get blood transfusions or change to new therapies.

Fingernail Color Anemia App 1

According to Rob Mannino as a former graduate student at Emory University, the app will contribute to limit the possible complications and side effects due to the wrong time to get a blood transfusion (too late or too early). This app belongs to Mannio’s Ph.D.

The scientists added that, instead of clinical diagnosis, screening should be the most applicable field of this app.

The targeted users can be anyone in the world (including developing countries) such as women in pregnancy, women who have an abnormal period, or athletes/runners.

Accuracy is always an essential factor necessary to satisfy regarding clinical diagnostic tools; however, the scientists believe that the new app can reach the required accuracy to be applied in anemia tests when they research it further.


The complete blood count (also known as CBC) is now a gold standard to diagnose anemia.

The scientists did a survey with 337 participants to gather photos of their fingernails and compare the fingernail bed color to hemoglobin levels. In sum, some are healthy, and some are diagnosed with anemia.

The researchers confirmed this app’s accuracy and sensitivity could touch 2.4 grams/deciliter and up to 97%, respectively. As we all know, there is no melanin in our fingernail beds, and that means the app can be applied for all of the people with various skin tones. Besides, it can correct the brightness in the background through image metadata and run on a variety of smartphone platforms.


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