AI mirror monitors Parkinson’s signs

Lookinglass mirror detects symptoms of Parkinson's, Alzheimer's disease

ON REFLECTION: Simon Cullen with the Lookinglass artifical intelligence mirror.

ON REFLECTION: Simon Cullen with the Lookinglass artifical intelligence mirror.

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A mirror that detects symptoms of Parkinson's has been developed in South Australia.

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A mirror that can detect the symptoms of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases in the home is being developed in South Australia.

Simon Cullen has developed an AI program to track body movements associated with Parkinson's and Alzheimer's disease.

A video camera mounted above the mirror captures images of people performing everyday tasks such as brushing their teeth as well as more structured exercises.

The video is then assessed for the signs and severity of symptoms by computer program designed in conjunction with doctors and occupational therapists.

The program can also track the severity of symptoms over time to monitor the progress of the disease. A report is then sent to relevant health professionals.

The Lookinglass product is being developed by Simon Cullen who is based at the University of South Australia’s Innovation & Collaboration Centre in Adelaide.

Cullen said Lookinglass was designed to help keep older people in their own homes for longer and reduce the number of physical appointments with doctors and occupational therapists. He said it was also ideal for people living in regional and remote areas.

“One of the greatest motivators I’ve found for elderly people being put into care facilities is their families are worried about them and unsure if they are OK to still be living on their own so it can push them out of their home before they need to go,” Cullen said.

“But by having this system they can get some information from the regular testing and it gives them reassurance.”

The key piece of tech in the design is the computer vision system that uses AI to track movement and compares it with known Parkinson’s symptoms. The Alzheimer’s testing is mainly cognitive based but is also mapped by the program.

Cullen, an artificial intelligence and computing specialist, said the mirror evaluated a person in two ways. “There’s the passive way where it just watches them going about their normal routines such as brushing their teeth or their hair and it can work out from there – especially with Parkinson’s – if there is a tremor present,” he said.

“The second way is with active games where they just have to follow a pointer on the mirror.” He hopes to have an advanced prototype for the mirror ready by the end of the year.

Read more: Australian Parkinson's Mission gets $30m funding boost to help find cure

Read more: Smart socks and mobile technology used in new Parkinson's falls program

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