Breathy diagnostics

Breath test diagnostics have been in development for many years, but a recent breakthrough could make the technique much more viable for clinical practice. According to researchers in the UK, trace analytes can be detected in the breath using near infrared Fourier transform broadband cavity enhanced absorption spectroscopy. This could open up a whole new area of medical diagnostics and health research. The team has obtained absorption measurements for various compounds, including isoprene, butadiene, acetone and methane found in simulated breath samples. The detection of acetone could be useful in monitoring the effects of fitness training as well as offering an early diagnostic for diabetes and a non-invasive method of monitoring blood glucose levels.