Sweat alcohol levels correlate with blood alcohol levels, new research confirms. The findings come from a study by US researchers who have made a wearable device that stimulates sweat production and measures its ethanol concentration every 25 seconds. The system could be developed to track important analytes like hormones, or pharmaceuticals, to tell users how drugs are metabolising in their body in real time.
Jason Heikenfeld from the University of Cincinnati, US, and his colleagues gave human subjects an alcoholic drink and measured ethanol levels in sweat from their forearms using a new non-invasive microfluidic sensing patch they have developed. The results mimicked blood alcohol content measured using a commercial breathalyser, with an expected time lag. ‘[This is] the world’s first demonstration where you have blood and sweat data that are lining up very nicely in a simple wearable patch,’ comments Heikenfeld.
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