Skip to Content

No-Pain Blood Tests

September 1, 1998

If you’re one of the 8 million Americans who donate blood each year, you know that before you can give from the arm, you’re going to get stuck in the earlobe or fingertip. This predonation anemia test boosts the nurse’s risk of blood exposure and adds to the bill for biohazardous-waste disposal. Philadelphia-based Cytometrics plans to put an end to those problems with the Hemoscan, a device that tests blood-without drawing any.

Slip a thermometer-like probe under your tongue for a moment, and the Hemoscan tells instantly whether you’re good to give. The probe houses a light source and a miniature camera that captures a video image of blood flowing through tiny vessels; a computer analyzes the spectrum of the reflected light and calculates the levels of red cells and hemoglobin. Cytometrics, working in partnership with the American Red Cross, hopes to have the device on the market next year.

Keep Reading

Most Popular

A Roomba recorded a woman on the toilet. How did screenshots end up on Facebook?

Robot vacuum companies say your images are safe, but a sprawling global supply chain for data from our devices creates risk.

A startup says it’s begun releasing particles into the atmosphere, in an effort to tweak the climate

Make Sunsets is already attempting to earn revenue for geoengineering, a move likely to provoke widespread criticism.

10 Breakthrough Technologies 2023

Every year, we pick the 10 technologies that matter the most right now. We look for advances that will have a big impact on our lives and break down why they matter.

The viral AI avatar app Lensa undressed me—without my consent

My avatars were cartoonishly pornified, while my male colleagues got to be astronauts, explorers, and inventors.

Stay connected

Illustration by Rose Wong

Get the latest updates from
MIT Technology Review

Discover special offers, top stories, upcoming events, and more.

Thank you for submitting your email!

Explore more newsletters

It looks like something went wrong.

We’re having trouble saving your preferences. Try refreshing this page and updating them one more time. If you continue to get this message, reach out to us at customer-service@technologyreview.com with a list of newsletters you’d like to receive.