Uroflowmeter Measures Urine Volume Simply by Using Toilet
Toto's Flowsky is a uroflowmeter capable of measuring urine flow volume and the amount of urine passed when the subject simply uses the toilet as normal.
"Used in hospital urology departments, this measures urine output in the diagnosis of urological disorders such as enlarged prostate and lower urinary tract problems. It can also be used to measure patients' daily urine volume on hospital wards, where the amount of urine is measured to manage fluid intake and output."
Based on a unique principle devised by Toto, the Flowsky uses a sensor in the toilet tank to measure changes in the volume of urine passed into the toilet, and calculates the urine flow rate and volume from the change in water level resulting from urination.
"Almost all the devices used for measuring urine output in urology departments are produced overseas. They work on the principle of the subject urinating through a funnel, and measuring the amount with a scale underneath. This is then divided by time to find the speed. These overseas devices work on the basis of weight. In this conventional method, the measured urine must then be disposed of somewhere else. That leaves open the possibility that someone's hands will come into contact with the urine at some point."
The version of the uroflowmeter for use on hospital wards can use bar codes or QR codes to recognize patients, utilizing Toto's proprietary "Flowsky-kun" management system software to measure and record the number of times they use the toilet and how much urine they pass.
"This product senses the amount of urine when a patient simply sits on the toilet and urinates, so no-one needs to handle the urine itself. That means that if it is used in hospital wards, patients and nurses have no need to deal with urine. Hospital infection, including the possibility of urinary infection, is an issue at the moment. Using the Flowsky can prevent this. As it measures the amount and movement of urine just by using it, this is a unique product."
The price is about US$25,000 per set in Japan. TOTO intends to make some minor changes and add functionality for measuring the specific gravity of urine.