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Home Monitor Enables Virtual Heart and Lung Exams

By HospiMedica International staff writers
Posted on 05 May 2020
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Image: The Coala Monitor transmitting data to the app (Photo courtesy of Coala Life).
Image: The Coala Monitor transmitting data to the app (Photo courtesy of Coala Life).
A small wireless device allows a physician to view a patient's electrocardiogram (ECG) as well as listen to their respiratory sounds without ever leaving home.

The Coala Life (Stockholm, Sweden) Coala Monitor is a next generation platform that provides an alternative to short-term, off-line ECG-patches to enable arrhythmia assessments in everyday life. After recording an ECG, the results are displayed within seconds in the Coala App and in the web-based Coala Care platform. By combining the 2-lead ECG and the synchronized heart sound recordings with a secure, cloud-based platform, the system allows remote analysis, auscultation, ability to create PDF's, download raw data, and communicate directly with the Coala users.

To start recording, the patient simply holds the Coala against their chest for a 30 second ECG recording, followed by a 30 second thumb-ECG recording. Recordings can be performed anywhere, anytime in daily life. The heart sound is also recorded synchronously with the chest measurement. The state-of-the-art algorithms then analyze the recordings instantly for atrial fibrillation (AF) and eight other arrhythmias, based on P-wave detection and respiration rate (RR) variability. The recordings are also sent encrypted and analyzed, allowing for long-term remote monitoring or 30-day ambulatory assessments.

“The Coala device is smartphone powered with an integrated, high-performance wireless stethoscope, and a synchronous high resolution 2-lead ECG, which allows for real-time remote diagnostics of arrhythmias, forms of congenital heart disease, and certain respiratory disorders,” said Philip Siberg, founder and president of Coala Life. “It truly enables telemedicine with the ability to monitor respiratory sounds and cardiac related conditions in the safety of patient's homes and help eliminate the need for office visits.”

Remote, continuous patient monitoring has shown a reduction in readmissions, improved patient outcomes, and overall decrease in cost of care compared to a traditional hospital stay. As a result of the current COVID-19 pandemic, an increasing aging population, and the demonstrated improved patient outcomes, healthcare providers are beginning to shift eligible patients toward home care programs.

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