Wearable medical devices have been among the latest advancements in health technologies, primarily marketed by some of the most prominent Silicon Valley tech companies. While Apple watches and Fitbits might come to mind when we think about wearable medical devices, the reality is that there are many types. A wearable medical device is any non-invasive device that has the ability to collect, transmit, and visualize patient health data.
What Are the Benefits of Wearable Medical Devices?
Collectively, wearable medical devices offer health practitioners and patients a better way to monitor health data through remote patient monitoring systems continuously. Remote patient monitoring refers to a practitioner’s ability to review patient data without keeping the patient in a clinical setting. Patients have the freedom to collect data without being in a hospital or doctor’s office and at meaningful times.
Being able to collect data at the right time is valuable for patients who experience sudden changes such as unpredictable and irregular heart rates. If a physician thinks their patient may be experiencing irregular heart rates, they can use a smartwatch with an EKG to allow the patient the freedom to go about their day and take accurate measurements of their heart rate using the EKG feature.
Traditionally doctors may have to schedule multiple clinic EKGs or patients making unnecessary trips to the ER to get an accurate diagnosis. Healthcare has seen faster diagnosis, personalized treatment, and reduced hospital resources because of wearable medical devices.
How Are Wearable Medical Devices Used in Practice?
Wearable #1 – Smartwatches
Smartwatches are the most common type of wearable medical device because of the rapid advancements. The original smartwatches were not wearable medical devices, but smartwatches now monitor steps taken, calories burned, oxygen levels and EKG reports with technological advancements. These watches provide visualizations of this data in easy-to-read formats to help consumers understand and improve their health.
Wearable #2 -Advanced Care & Alert Portable Telemedical Monitor (AMON)
Advanced Care & Alert Portable Telemedical Monitoring is a wearable medical device that is commonly found in doctor’s offices. A nurse will collect vital data like pulse and oxygen levels quickly from this device. Another type of AMON is used during surgeries and post-surgery to monitor vitals continually and provide real-time updates and alert clinician staff of any changes. Over the last several years, AMON technology has continued to advance to collect data more accurately and provide clinicians with more meaningful data to ensure better outcomes.
Wearable #3 – Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM)
Continuous glucose monitoring refers to a significant advancement in diabetes care. Traditionally, diabetic patients monitor their glucose levels in relation to mealtimes by using a blood litmus test. However, sudden drops or spikes in glucose can be perilous for these patients. The causes for a change in blood glucose levels can vary from patient to patient.
CGM technology is a wearable sensor that monitors glucose levels throughout the day without any intervention required by the patient. Any spikes or dips result in a smartphone notification. This allows diabetic patients to intervene sooner, resulting in better outcomes.
DeviceLab & Wearable Medical Devices
There are many types of wearables, and DeviceLab is here to help support your product development and creation. Wherever you are developing a wearable medical device, DeviceLab is here to support your product development and launch. Schedule a free, confidential consultation today.