Wearable Medical Devices: Monitoring Vitals, Saving Lives

Wearable medical devices can be understood as being
autonomous devices worn to provide medical monitoring over an extended period
of time. They can be either worn as an accessory, implanted into clothing, or
even attached to the skin, and are designed to be easily used even by unskilled
users. They are generally made to be like and non-intrusive, and generally have
non-invasive sensors and medical feedback, and wireless data transmission
capabilities.

Wearable medical devices are generally made for the remote
medical monitoring and management of illnesses for disabled or chronically ill
patients, by providing instant data to healthcare providers for immediate
intervention.

Data that is collected from these Wearable medical devices
is also being used in research for the understanding of chronic debilitating
illnesses, their cause and even perhaps a cure in the near future.

Benefits of Medical Wearables

There is a shifting consumer trend, with people becoming
concerned about health and wellness and taking steps to proactively stay
healthy, driving the growth of the wearable medical device market. Wearable
medical devices offer a host of benefits for the aware user, with manufacturers
catering to the individual needs of the consumer base. The first of these
benefits is keeping users engaged; manufacturers are making healthcare a more
involved process by way of offering the ability to monitor themselves, keeping
them engaged.

Another benefit of wearable medical devices is that it
allows for the monitoring of vulnerable patients from a distance. For example
healthcare providers are using wearable technology to track vitals and monitor
data for patients who are prone to chronic medical issues that need constant
attention, but do not need to be at the hospital for constant care, like diabetes,
hypertension, and cardiovascular disease.

With the increasing demand from consumers to monitor their
and the general increase in awareness of the benefits of doing so have led to
wearables medical devices becoming increasingly popular in recent years, this
includes devices like watches, trackers and monitoring machines being used to
collect health data. Popular types of wearable medical devices include:

Smart Watches:
Smart watches are being continually developed to include more features,
transforming them into viable healthcare tools. An example of this is Apple’s
Heart Study App, launched in 2017, which monitor’s the wearers heart rate and
alerts those experiencing any abnormality.

ECG Monitors:
Wearable ECG monitors, which are at the forefront of consumer electronics and
medical wearables, have taken medical wearables to the next level. For
instance: Withing’s Move ECG, launched in 2019, is an analogue watch with a
built-in ECG that is clinically validated.

Biosensors: The wearable medical devices landscape is being transformed drastically with biosensors leading the way into innovation and product development. For instance: Phillips’ Wearable biosensors are a remote sensing device that are used to continuously monitor and measure vital signs and even posture, meant for hospital use.

Wearable Scanners for
Diagnostic Purposes

Wearable medical devices have been taken one step further
with research into innovative imaging devices for diagnostic purposes that are
wearable. A new generation of brain scanner, that is being seen as improvements
made to the Whole head magnetoencephalography (MEG) systems, is worn like a
helmet and can be used to measure brain activity. It is set to revolutionize
human brain imaging by being more sensitive than currently available systems.

AI Enabled Wearable Medical Devices Wearable medical devices are designed to collect health data and monitor it. And while it serves the purpose of allowing the user to keep track of various health parameters, the adoption of technological advances like Artificial Intelligence (AI) into wearable medical devices has helped them improve the quality of the consumers in various ways. For Instance: Current Health’s AI powered remote patient monitoring device, which was approved for widespread use by America’s Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the first half of 2019, measures a patient’s pulse, respiration, oxygen saturation, temperature and mobility, and provides physicians with real-time updates allowing them to take decisions almost instantly. It is being marketed as having ICU-level accuracy, so intervention is as convenient as possible.

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