Mini ECG gets heart attack rehab patients mobile

Jul 17, 2008

Dr Charles Worringham of Queensland University of Technology's Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation said the unique 'Cardiomobile' monitoring system, developed by Gold Coast company Alive Technologies, was being further developed and trialled together with QUT under an ARC Linkage Grant.

"The program allows people who have been in hospital for a heart attack or heart surgery to undergo a six-week walking exercise rehabilitation program wherever it's convenient, while having their heart signal, location and speed monitored in real time," Dr Worringham said.

"We are trying this approach because 80 per cent of cardiac patients never complete recommended hospital outpatient rehabilitation programs, despite the fact that they cut recurrent heart attacks by 17%, substantially reduce deaths, prevent re-hospitalisation, and improve both function and quality of life."

"It's not because they don't want to take part, it's usually because they cannot get to the hospital's program easily, because there simply isn't one nearby, or because work or family commitments take priority."

Dr Worringham said country singer and songwriter Alan McPherson was one of the first to trial the system.

"Mr McPherson was able to do his rehabilitation sessions while on tour from Queensland to Victoria knowing he was being properly monitored," he said.

"Without the system he would have either had to cancel his tour, forego the rehab program, or take a chance and exercise with no monitoring or support."

The Cardiomobile system works by the patient attaching to their chests a mini ECG (electrocardiogram or heart signal) monitor and wearing a cap with a lightweight GPS receiver, both connected to a mobile phone via Bluetooth.

"Patients phone in at the start of their scheduled session and then their heart signal, location, speed and gradient are monitored in real-time over the web by a qualified exercise scientist, who guides the patient's program and checks their progress," Dr Worringham said.

"If there is any problem with the heart signal we can immediately contact the patient, and consult with the cardiologist if needed.

"Although serious problems in cardiac rehab are very rare, if there is an emergency we can direct the paramedics to the exact location without delay. While this approach is different from a hospital-based program, we are talking about a group of patients who either wouldn't exercise at all or would have to go it alone - something many lack the confidence for after heart attacks and surgery."

"If this approach works, it could go a long way towards assisting the recovery of heart patients not reached by conventional rehabilitation, and help to cut the number of avoidable re-admissions to hospital," Dr Worringham said.

Source: Queensland University of Technology

Explore further: Researchers developing an artificial vision system for prosthetic legs to improve gait

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Korean tech start-ups offer life beyond Samsung

Feb 23, 2015

As an engineering major at Seoul's Yonsei University, Yoon Ja-Young was perfectly poised to follow the secure, lucrative and socially prized career path long-favoured by South Korea's elite graduates.

Fresh nuclear leak detected at Fukushima plant

Feb 22, 2015

Sensors at the Fukushima nuclear plant have detected a fresh leak of highly radioactive water to the sea, the plant's operator announced Sunday, highlighting difficulties in decommissioning the crippled plant.

Spacewalking astronauts route cable in 1st of 3 jobs

Feb 22, 2015

(AP)—Spacewalking astronauts routed more than 300 feet (90 meters) of cable outside the International Space Station on Saturday, tricky and tiring advance work for the arrival of new American-made crew ...

Recommended for you

Many transplant surgeons suffer burnout

Feb 25, 2015

Despite saving thousands of lives yearly, nearly half of organ transplant surgeons report a low sense of personal accomplishment and 40% feel emotionally exhausted, according to a national study on transplant surgeon burnout

5 tips for handling early-year medical expenses

Feb 25, 2015

The clock on insurance deductibles reset on Jan. 1, and that means big medical bills are in store for some. Patients may be required to pay thousands of dollars before their health care coverage kicks in.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.