Tattoo like skin thermometer that could eventually monitor health and mental issues

Temperature patches are a relatively new technology and there is one that is basically designed as an early warning device to help prevent heat stroke and potentially save lives, but there are several others that are being studied that monitor not only eventual health issues, but could also mental states.

Researchers have created a patch that when glued to the skin can be used as a thermometer and can continuously measure skin temperature for mental activity, physical stimulation and vasoconstriction and dilation.

These ultra-thin electronic skin thermometers are flexible and wearable and resemble a temporary bar code tattoo, and can read body temperature at the skin level accurately, and more importantly over a continuous period of time, which currently doesn’t happen because current paste-on temperature sensors cannot monitor detailed changes.

While other devices like infrared cameras are expensive and require the patient to remain still.

John Rogers, who is also the cofounder of wearable sensor company MC10 created the tattoo thermometer and led the study that was published in the journal Nature Materials, was initially approached by NIH temperature researchers after he published an article in 2011 in Scienceon original electronic sensors.

“When we were first approached by the NIH guys, temperature to me didn’t seem to be a very compelling or interesting parameter. It turns out that it is, if you can measure it with extreme precision,” said Rogers to MobiHealthNews.

“If you can determine it to the third decimal place and accurately track the change at that level, it provides a lot of deep insight into physiological health” adding that ”temperature sensors could be built into wearable devices along with other sensors.”

“Imagine adding precision temperature to a suite of sensors,” continued Rogers. “Use this along with accelerometry, blood oxygen, ECG. I think it adds into a pool of measurement modalities that could be really valuable.”

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