Smart laser gun estimates risk of cardiovascular disease

(05-03-2019) Researchers from Imec, UGent and other partners have developed a laser gun that measures the stiffness of the blood vessels quickly and efficiently. That is an important barometer of cardiovascular health.

The prototype device developed by imec, Ghent University, Medtronic and seven other partners within the CARDIS project allows us to measure the stiffness of the blood vessels much more easily, faster and more accurately.

The device works on the basis of the Doppler effect (Laser Doppler Vibrometry or LDV) using a low-power laser beam on the skin,  directed above an artery, after which the reflected laser beam is analyzed. The 'Doppler' shift between the two - the frequency or color change that occurs as a result of the movement of the skin - gives an indication of the moment at which the pressure wave passes.  By doing this in two places, the stiffness of the blood vessel can be estimated.

Read a full interview with Patrick Segers (ELIS, UGent) and Roel Baets (imec, UGent):