Anemia, defined by low levels of hemoglobin in red blood cells, affects over 1 billion people yearly worldwide and is most commonly caused by nutritional deficiencies in iron, folate, or vitamin B12. Young infants are at particular risk for anemia which, if untreated, can lead to permanent neurologic and cognitive damage. Currently, anemia is diagnosed with a complete blood count (CBC) on a clinical hematology analyzer that is based in a clinic or hospital. Due to lack of medical resources that prevents easy access to CBCs in developing countries, thousands of children and adults die needlessly every day due to severe undiagnosed anemia. Although some point-of-care anemia diagnostics exist, there is currently no inexpensive, disposable, self-contained, patient-operated, self-test available for diagnosing and assessing the degree of anemia. The AnemoCheck offers a convenient way to screen for and monitor anemia quickly, safely and accurately at home and can also be used as an inexpensive and simple alternative to the CBC in resource-poor settings.
AnemoCheck is a point-of-care, patient-operated, self-contained, disposable, diagnostic test for anemia. Each AnemoCheck test kit enables patients to check hemoglobin levels by simply pricking their finger to draw 5 μL of blood into a capillary tube, inserting that tube into a larger tube with a pre-filled chemical solution, mixing, waiting one minute, and assessing the color change of the solution using a reference color scale card included with the kit. Ideally, the test would be able to subjectively differentiate low, medium and high levels of hemoglobin to diagnose anemia at home.
This project was funded by APDC. When the project joined the consortium the device was in the prototype stage of development.