Miniature electronics that power smartphones and gaming consoles are sparking new innovations in cardiology. Wireless devices monitor the heart 24/7 to save lives in specialized hospital units. Now, the sophisticated gizmos are standing watch over heart patients after they go home.
Today’s tiny implants monitor blood flow or heart rhythm, among other key measures. Then, when something goes wrong, the device signals a medical professional and alerts the patient to seek help immediately. Research proves that implanted heart failure monitors reduce hospitalizations and improve outcomes. Pacemaker and defibrillator monitors with wireless communication features routinely perform checkups without a trip to the doctor’s office.
On the horizon: an early warning system to detect heart attacks before symptoms occur, ensuring the best, most timely treatment possible. Clinical trials of the AngelMed Guardian device (the ALERTS study) are recruiting patients at nearly 80 study locations nationwide.