Lung Flute Uses Sound to Dislodge Mucous

People who suffer from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease have bronchial cilia in their lungs that produce too much mucous. Acoustics engineer Sandy Hawkins has developed a flute that produces a sound that dislodges excess mucous in the lungs. In Popular Science, Corey Binns writes:

Hawkins began building an electronic sound machine that would produce waves of 16 hertz—the same frequency at which the cilia move—to help break up the mucus. Generating a hum of such a low frequency normally requires van-size subwoofers, and so he spent 15 years honing and shrinking the speakers. Then one day as he was testing a mouthpiece filter for his machine, he noticed that blowing through it sent a slight vibration into his chest. Within five seconds, he sketched out the Lung Flute to amplify the effect. Blowing into the tube flaps a reed-thin sheet of plastic, which vibrates the chest and shakes the mucus until it’s thin and mobile enough for the cilia to usher it up your throat. “I felt so stupid because the answer was so simple,” Hawkins says.

Today, doctors in Japan use the $40 Lung Flute as a tool to collect sputum from patients suspected of carrying tuberculosis, and in Europe and Canada it’s used to help test phlegm for lung cancer. Clinical trials in the U.S. have shown that it is at least as effective as current COPD treatments. At press time, Hawkins expected the device to receive FDA approval any day, and says the reusable device could also provide home relief for patients with cystic fibrosis, influenza and asthma.


Link | Video of the flute in use | Image: Popular Science

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Not only that, Ed, this page http://medicalacoustics.com/Home/LungFlute/Therapeutic says the product is only approved for non-US residents. Our FDA at work. Again.
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This is so strange! I want to buy a lung flute and every search is a dead end. There is seemingly no reason for it to be a controlled item other than to have insurance cover it. Someone is missing the boat for marketing this thingy!
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I would like to buy a lung flute and if you go to the medicalacoustics.com website the Popular Science suggested in thier Dec. 2009 issue it it listed for $40.00. There is NO place to buy it on the website. Has anyone found one yet?
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I am very much interested to introduce this to my country as I am into sales and a lot of people here are infected with upper respiratory diseases and the fact that it has a reasonable price, people here from all walks of life can very well afford this. Please try to get in touch with me anytime after FDA's approval so we can talk about this matter .Thank you and looking forward to be in business with you.
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"Clinical trials in the U.S. have shown that it is at least as effective as current COPD treatments." - Really doesn't seem like a breakthrough considering there is oscillatory PEP (ie. Flutter and Acapella) and CF kids blowing bubbles in milk bottles for years and years, doing the same thing much more cheaply.

And the mucus/mucous correction is irrelevant as the contents may be blood, serous or something else - not just mucus. Once it's passes the throat it's sputum. Yum.
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