Meet Salvo, who’s investigating the effects of sound on sleep
The Critical Alarms Lab is nothing without motivated Industrial Design Engineering students who feel the urge of improving (alarming) sounds and its interplay with people present in the ICU. Salvo is one of these students. Together with Dilip (CAL researcher and alumnus), he investigates the effects of sound on a patient's sleep.
Who are you?
“Hi, my name is Salvatore Luca Cucinella, but you can call me Salvo. I come from Italy, where I live in a small town near Palermo, Montelepre – Sicily. In Palermo, I graduated as an Industrial Designer. My interests in the fields of the Internet of Things and Ergonomics grew and led me to TU Delft as the place to study for my specialisation. The master Design for Interaction teaches me to effectively design from a user-centred perspective. Being part of the CAL team and an intern at Erasmus MC give me the opportunity to “touch” real health-related problems from a professional perspective.”
By doing the Medisign Specialisation, I can show who I am as a designer – I feel a sense of purpose when designing for people in distress and trying to enhance their quality of life.
What's your research about?
“At the Critical Alarms Lab we try to understand and change the effect of sounds on people present in the intensive care unit. The research I’m involved in, focusses on the sleep experience of non-sedated critically ill patients. ICU patients suffer often from sleep disorders, partly caused by sounds from all the medical machinery and staff.
Dilip and I want to look into different sound producing events, such as sound made by interactions between humans (i.e. clinicians, patients, visitors, other staff members), interactions between humans and the environment (i.e. medical devices, tools, ICU’s architecture), and stationary events (such as air-conditioning). We are currently setting up a study to categorize all these sound producing events to which patients are subjected throughout the day and their effects on sleep. We are going to present this study at the Medical Ethical Committee with the goal to run a six months study where several non-sedated ICU patients will be involved.
Our final goal is to summarize the sound producing events and their acoustical nature and their effect on patient sleep in an interactive map. We want to make a clear picture of the ICU environment and a deeper understanding of the effects of sounds on sleep. The outcomes may open a room for new design opportunities that could enhance not only the understanding of medical staff but especially the health of the critically ill patients.”