Heart ischemia (IHD) is number one killer in the world (WHO, 2012). Today, patients with chest pain are referred to a hospital/cardiologist, and ischemia is evaluated during exercise on bicycle/treadmill (known as the stress test). Patients with a positive stress test will then be referred to coronary angiography. The treatment for IHD is effective and it is possible to prevent myocardial infarct when the IHD conditions are discovered early.
However, the biggest challenge with IHD is that many ischaemic conditions are clinically silent (i.e. without any symptoms). Also a negative stress test will not always exclude coronary artery disease, because the test is done only within 10–20 minutes and not during patient daily activities. Therefore there is a need for easy to use, quick and affordable way for long term heart monitoring.
HeartWear system was created to solve those challenges and to enable innovating today’s processes in the healthcare. HeartWear solution is easy to use, cost effective and provides quick results.
The HeartWear system consists of four principal components:
- the disposable unit (DU) consisting of a flexible PCB integrated to plaster (developed by EII),
- the sensor unit (SU) taking care of recording patient signals (developed by EII),
- the main unit (MU) or belt unit recording and storing the data (developed by Joanneum),
- the server unit (software) to cover all processes needed for patient measurements by doctors and hospital personnel (developed by Joanneum Research).
The HeartWear project is finished with good results – project partners have developed a fully functioning prototype system and first results from clinical validation that demonstrate that the quality of the electrocardiogram (ECG) signals from both HeartWear and SoA 12-lead ECG systems was good and there were no significant differences between the systems.