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Posted on September 28, 2009 by  & 

ECG necklace for home cardiac monitoring

An ECG necklace that monitors long-term cardiac performance allows patients to remain mobile to continue their daily activities while under observation using an embedded beat detection algorithm monitoring system.
Developed within the Holst Centre Technology Integration Program on Body Area Networks, the ECG necklace prototype contains an ultra low-power analog readout ASIC (application-specific integrated circuit), relying on a low power commercial radio/microprocessor platform.
A wavelet-based heart beat detection algorithm, is embedded in the processor that ensures accurate computation of the heart rate, even under high levels of noise. A second ultra-low power microcontroller unit controls the wireless transmission of the ECG data to a computer within a range of 10m. An optional memory module enables data logging for applications where the receiving computer is not in the neighborhood.
An exponential rise in cardiovascular diseases has necessitated uninterrupted monitoring of cardiac patients, which is set to rise with an aging baby boomer generation and changing consumer lifestyles. This has created a rapid advancement of ambulatory monitoring products and services, also spurred by the introduction of new monitoring devices and techniques. According to some industry forecasts, the Holter monitoring systems market is expected to grow to over $140 million by 2010.
Many people are still struggling to acquire the correct diagnosis of their specific condition. Ambulatory cardiac monitoring systems today suffer from inaccurate measurements, which are inherent to ambulatory situations. Holt's embedded beat detection algorithm has been optimized for robust heart beat detection. It copes with baseline wander, EMG (electromyogram) and motion artefacts, and high and variable electrode impedance. Heart beat is detected with 1 sample resolution. The algorithm achieves best-in-class performances, with 99.8% sensitivity and 99.77% positive predictivity on both the MIT-BIH database and a proprietary database of ambulatory ECG recordings. A satisfactory performance is achieved until 0dB SNR (signal to noise ratio).
The new ECG necklace, can be used for permanent screening of people at risk of cardiovascular disorders, heart beat and beat analysis information for fit & healthy people and therapy compliance and follow-up for people under cardiovascular treatment.
Companies wanting to become a research partner or enter into a licensing agreement for further product development should join the Human++ program - the Holst Centre's strategic program in which technology innovations for health and wellness monitoring are demonstrated and tested.
Reference: Holst Centre

Authored By:

Business Development Director, Research

Posted on: September 28, 2009

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