The shirt that could save you a visit to the hospital

“We're not there yet, but I'm getting close,” says Li Guo, who within the scope of her thesis “Textile-Based Sensors and Smart Clothing System for Respiratory Monitoring” has designed a piece of clothing that can sense the expansion of the abdomen and thorax as you breathe.

Breathing difficulties are more common than what is perhaps thought, and for people suffering from sleep apnea or stress-related conditions, Li Guo's invention could be a great help. Instead of time-consuming hospital visits, the patient can measure their breathing at home – by putting on a shirt.

“There is complicated research behind the concept, but the method is simple to use. The stretchable material adapts to the shape of the body and sends signals to an electronic unit, which in turn makes it possible for a healthcare professional to make a diagnosis and recommend treatment.”

Prototypes have been developed and are being tested with positive results. 

What is the next step?

“I am currently seeking funding to continue my research. The goal is for a signal to be sent directly to the hospital in the event of respiratory difficulties, so that lives can be saved.”

Text: Rebecca Lindholm