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Evaluation of a digital stethoscope and smart device technology for assessment of heart rate in the newborn infant
  1. Ajay C Kevat1,2,3,
  2. Jennifer Dawson1,2,3,
  3. Peter G Davis1,2,3,
  4. C Omar F Kamlin1,2,3
  1. 1Neonatal Services, The Royal Women's Hospital, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
  2. 2Department of Obstetrics & Gynaecology, University of Melbourne, Parkville, Victoria, Australia
  3. 3Neonatal and Emergency Research Groups, Murdoch Childrens Research Institute, Parkville, Victoria, Australia
  1. Correspondence to Dr Ajay C Kevat, Neonatal Services, The Royal Women's Hospital, Corner Grattan Street & Flemington Road, Parkville VIC 3052, Australia; ajaykevat{at}

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As neonatal heart rate (HR) is a vital sign used to assess the need for and response to resuscitation,1 measuring it rapidly, accurately and affordably is important to clinicians around the world. We aimed to assess the accuracy, speed and reliability of a novel low-cost digital stethoscope (DS) attached to a smartphone running real-time newborn HR detection software in determining the HR of clinically stable infants.

We studied infants >26 weeks’ corrected gestation excluding those receiving high-frequency oscillation ventilation. We applied the Stethocloud V.0.2beta DS head to their exposed precordium. The DS was connected to an Apple iPhone 5s running Neorate 0.1a software (CliniCloud, Melbourne, Australia) which displayed a real-time HR (DS HR). …

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  • Contributors All authors were involved in the planning, conduct and reporting of the work.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Ethics approval The Human Research and Ethics Committees of The Royal Women’s Hospital, Melbourne, Australia.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Data sharing statement Unpublished data from the study can be made available. Please contact the corresponding author.