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Doctors and nurses are not always around to monitor their patients, which is why patient monitoring devices are widely used to keep track of different metrics. These devices continuously monitor a patient’s condition, alerting staff of any changes. Medical tests are also helpful in measuring specific parameters.
Doctors make use of different devices depending on the patient’s condition. Those with cardiac conditions often require continuous electrocardiography in order to assess the patient’s heart rhythm. Cardiac monitoring may require the patient to wear a small monitor known as the Holter monitor. In some cases, an invasive catheter is placed to monitor cardiac output.
Haemodynamic monitoring is also commonly done in the hospital. It monitors a person’s blood flow and blood pressure. This can be done noninvasively with the use of a blood pressure cuff, or invasively where a blood pressure transducer assembly is inserted.
Neurological monitoring requires special devices that are capable of monitoring brain waves. Intracranial pressure is also frequently monitored among people with issues that affect the brain.
Respiratory monitoring is another vital part of creating a treatment plan for patients that have respiratory issues. Pulse oximetry involves measuring oxygen saturation in the blood with the use of an infrared finger cuff. Respiratory rate is measured with the use of an ECG channel or through capnography.
Patient monitoring devices are also used to monitor blood sugar levels and body temperature. There are specific devices available for newborns, children, and adults.
Monitoring of Vital Parameters
Monitoring of vital signs include checking the blood pressure, heart rate, respiratory rate, and oxygen saturation continuously. These devices simultaneously measure different vital parameters and are often seen in critical care units and anaesthetic machines in operating theatres. These devices monitor patients continuously and inform medical staff of any changes in a patient’s condition. Some devices even have the ability to warn medical staff of any upcoming cardiac conditions before signs become noticeable.
Remote Patient Monitoring
Patient monitoring nowadays is no longer limited to clinical settings. These devices can also be used at home. People with chronic diseases can benefit from remote patient monitoring (RPM) devices as these devices can improve their quality of life. It allows them to maintain their independence and prevent complications. Moreover, it minimizes healthcare costs.
Through remote patient monitoring, patients and their loved ones can stay at home and receive care at home. Also, they have peace of mind knowing that healthcare staff are monitoring them and will provide support in case a problem arises. Through remote patient monitoring, it is now possible to detect deterioration early on, thereby reducing visits to the emergency department.
Common Uses of Remote Patient Monitoring Technology
RPM technology is commonly used by dementia patients who are at risk for falls. With the use of falls sensors, patients are continuously monitored and their safety is ensured. Sensors can be attached to an individual’s cane, walker, or any other assistive mobility device. They monitor a person’s location, gait, velocity, and acceleration. Its algorithm enables it to predict the chances for falls. It also detects any changes in movement and alerts caregivers in case the person has suffered a fall. Moreover, it has tracking capabilities that will tell caregivers the location of a wandering person.
RPM technology also helps people with diabetes by measuring several parameters: blood pressure, blood sugar levels, and body weight. Real-time delivery of these measurements alert both the patient and healthcare staff to provide intervention when needed.
Patient monitoring devices do not only continuously provide information that help healthcare providers treat patients and prevent complications, but the data they provide are also used in conducting further medical research. With their increasing use in medicine, there is no question that patient monitoring technology is more important than ever.