Evaluation of a wireless cardio respiratory monitor for neonates

Abstract. Objective: Each year thousands of preterm and sick infants are admitted to neonatal intensive care units (NICU) requiring continuous cardio respiratory monitoring. A new and innovative wireless monitor was evaluated which incorporates two unique non invasive electrodeless sensors for the detection of respiration and cardiac waveforms. The objective of the study was to determine if the sensors used by the wireless monitor (PGS Medical Research and Electronic Design, LLC, Fairfield, CT) provide equal performance for data acquisition compared to reference monitors. A further objective was to evaluate the potential ease of application and lack of wires offered by this technology in the NICU. Methods: After approval from the Institutional Review Board (IRB) and obtaining parental consent, 25 patients were enrolled in the study. The wireless sensor belt was then placed around the abdomen. Breathing and heart rate waveform were recorded from the wireless research monitor and from the existing NICU equipment (reference monitor) for a total of 90 minutes. Results: Waveform data was recorded on a 4 channel analog Windaq system. Each file was then reviewed and 5 selections of at least 3 minutes duration wherein both monitors were displaying stable waveforms were compared for parity of peaks representing a beat. Manually counting the peaks showed a 96% correspondence with standard deviation of ±2 beats discrepancy between the two monitors. Conclusion: The data from the study supports the wireless/electrodeless monitor as an effective method to collect cardio respiratory data in the NICU patient population.

*Corresponding Author: 

Dr. K. Rais-Bahrami, Department of Neonatology, Children’s National Medical Center, 111 Michigan Avenue, N.W., Washington, DC 20010-2970, USA. Tel.: +1 202 476 4683; Fax: +1 202 476 3459; E-mail: kraisbah@cnmc.org.