DOI: 10.1177/20552076231197961 ISSN:

Accuracy of smartphone camera urine photo colorimetry as indicators of dehydration

Aida Bustam, Khadijah Poh, Siew Shuin Soo, Fathmath Sausan Naseem, Mohd Hafyzuddin Md Yusuf, Naseeha Ubaidi Hishamudin, Muhaimin Noor Azhar
  • Health Information Management
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Health Informatics
  • Health Policy


Direct urine color assessment has been shown to correlate with hydration status. However, this method is subject to inter- and intra-observer variability. Digital image colorimetry provides a more objective method. This study evaluated the diagnostic accuracy of urine photo colorimetry using different smartphones under different lighting conditions, and determined the optimal cut-off value to predict clinical dehydration.


The urine samples were photographed in a customized photo box, under five simulated lighting conditions, using five smartphones. The images were analyzed using Adobe Photoshop to obtain Red, Green, and Blue (RGB) values. The correlation between RGB values and urine laboratory parameters were determined. The optimal cut-off value to predict dehydration was determined using area under the receiver operating characteristic curve.


A total of 56 patients were included in the data analysis. Images captured using five different smartphones under five lighting conditions produced a dataset of 1400 images. The study found a statistically significant correlation between Blue and Green values with urine osmolality, sodium, urine specific gravity, protein, and ketones. The diagnostic accuracy of the Blue value for predicting dehydration were “good” to “excellent” across all phones under all lighting conditions with sensitivity >90% at cut-off Blue value of 170.


Smartphone-based urine colorimetry is a highly sensitive tool in predicting dehydration.

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