In the past, we’ve expressed our enthusiasm about mobile and wearable technology to monitor cardiac conditions. We wrote about research at the University of British Columbia with low-cost ultrasound transducers and potential medical applications in diagnosing illness and injuries. We also covered work on wearable ultrasound patches at the University of California at San Diego’s Jacobs School of Engineering .
At CES 2021, the Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI) of Taiwan introduced the Heart Guardian at CES 2021 that also uses ultrasound. It relies on a miniature, high-sensitivity patch-type transducer, a low-power Doppler ultrasound signal processing chipset, and a mobile computing device. Heart Guardian monitors cardiac output, heart rate, pulmonary artery blood flow velocity, and blood output volume.
According to ITRI engineers, cardiac patients can wear the Heart Guardian safely all day including during exercise for continuous real-time monitoring. The device can also be helpful monitoring patients with sleep disorders. The non-invasive Heart Guardian is safe, fast, and accurate and can also detect atrial tremors, ITRI claims. Due to its potential low production cost and ease of use, ITRI engineers believe the Heart Guardian has a role in post-discharge care and remote patient monitoring as well as applications in monitoring cardiac patients in the hospital.
ITRI also introduced a pair of innovative products: iCardioGuard and iDarlingWeaR. Instead of ultrasound, iCardioGuard uses ITRI’s own Low Power Microwave Sensor technology to detect heart rate, blood pressure, and blood flow. iDarlingWeaR uses low power radar to track a sleeping infant’s heart beat, breathing, and movements.