The following is a summary of “Continuous Monitoring Versus Intermittent Auscultation of Wheezes in Patients Presenting With Acute Respiratory Distress” published in the October 2022 issue of Emergency Medicine by Au et al.

Longitudinal, objective and computer-based examination of lung sounds is made possible by auscultation utilizing a wearable stethoscope. However, unlike bedside auscultation, doctors are not present to ensure optimal quality of auscultation when using this procedure. These 2 types of auscultation have not been compared in any previous research. This study aimed to evaluate the efficacy of continuous auscultation with a wearable stethoscope versus intermittent auscultation with a traditional stethoscope for the detection of wheeze in patients presenting with acute respiratory distress(ARD).

Acute respiratory distress patients who presented to the emergency room were included. For continuous auscultation, researchers employed the Strados Remote Electronic Stethoscope Platform (RESPTM), while for intermittent auscultation, investigators used an electronic stethoscope that has been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). First, it was recorded using an electronic stethoscope. After that, until the patient was either admitted or discharged from the emergency room, RESPTM  was used to make continuous recordings. About 2 expert doctors checked the accuracy of the recorded wheeze count in each sample.

About 43 individuals were enrolled in the trial between May 2018 and May 2019. Due to missing or partial audio recording data, 3 patients were left out of the analysis. Average recording time for continuous auscultation was 62.3 minutes, but the equivalent for intermittent auscultation was only 0.7 minutes; wheezes were present in 77.5 % (31 of 40) of intermittent recordings, in contrast to 85% (34 of 40) of continuous recordings. When compared to the standard of care, intermittent auscultation, and prolonged auscultation with a wearable stethoscope in a loud clinical environment demonstrated equivalent performance in identifying individuals who had wheezes.