An Automated System for the Analysis of Newborns' Oral-Motor Behavior


Eleonora Tamilia, Domenico Formica, Alberto Scaini, and Fabrizio Taffoni. 2016. “An Automated System for the Analysis of Newborns' Oral-Motor Behavior.” IEEE Trans Neural Syst Rehabil Eng, 24, 12, Pp. 1294-1303.


The assessment of oral-motor behavior (OMB) represents one the earliest noninvasive ways to evaluate newborns' well-being and neuromotor behavior. This work aimed at developing a new low-cost, easy-to-use and noninvasive system for a technology-aided assessment of newborns' OMB during bottle feeding. A SUcking MOnitoring Device (SUMOD) was designed and developed to be easily integrated on a typical feeding bottle. A software system was developed to automatically treat and analyze the acquired data: proper algorithms for a fully automatic segmentation and features extraction are proposed and implemented. A set of measures of motor control and coordination are introduced and implemented for the specific application to the OMB analysis. Experimental data were collected on two groups of newborns (healthy versus low birth weight) with the SUMOD in a clinical setting.