One key element in the recent trend toward digital health has been the development of wearable sensors that monitor vital signs and send data instantaneously to medical professionals for instant viewing, as well as storing them in databases for predictive monitoring and trend analysis. Vivalink, a digital health provider of hardware and software solutions, has developed a wearable sensor that monitors four vital signs—heartbeat, respiratory rate, temperature, and blood pressureꟷin a single patch the size of a small bandage.
The multimodal patch uses advanced electrical circuitry that can accurately and instantaneously capture vital sign activity and feed it to cloud-based clinical applications. The patch’s on-board memory captures data during network outages and synchronizes the data once network connections are re-established.
Jiang Li, CEO of Vivalink, told Design News in a conference call that the ability to integrate all the key vital sign sensing capabilities, particularly blood pressure monitoring, in a single device has been difficult to achieve. “One approach that has been tried uses optical sensors, but that method does not result in stable, consistent readings. We were able to use an electrical sensing method that correlates to the cardiac cycle. So far, the results we have achieved in testing have been good.”
Being able to measure key vital signs from the same patch potentially gives health personnel many advantages in monitoring patients, as there would be no need to lug around separate instruments, such as the traditional cuff-type blood pressure monitor. “Our goal is to eliminate the need to use separate instruments to perform these functions,” Li added. “We wanted something stable for ambulatory measurements.”
Li added that by being able to rapidly and accurate give blood pressure and other readings, medical professionals could administer necessary medicines or take other measures to stabilize the health of ill or injured patients. And, through the company’s software platforms, the medical data would be readily available for health trend monitoring and the implementation of health treatment regimes.
According to Li, the patented sensor is currently undergoing testing agency approvals. Vivalink is currently targeting the sensor at medical professionals.