Substantial benefits from telemonitoring trial that avoids patient involvement

In a possible pointer to a future of greater benefits from telemonitoring when vital signs information is transmitted to care-givers automatically, eg from smart clothing or subcutaneous probes, Heartwire reports on the successful Dutch IN-TIME RCT involving implant-based home monitoring for patients with advanced heart failure. For those in the intervention group, in-house monitoring significantly reduced the worsening of their condition, and significantly reduced mortality, compared with the control group.

Asked why his study succeeded where others have not, Dr Gerhard Hindricks, University of Leipzig, Germany, presenting IN-TIME to the press at the European Society of Cardiology (ESC) 2013 Congress was very complimentary about the Biotronik system used.

He added “All the patient has to do after the implant has been done is plug in the Cardio Messenger, and from that moment on—and this is really important—everything works very automatically. Automatic detection of the signals, automatic transmission—the patient does nothing. This is one of the differences with other telemonitoring applications. Whenever you involve patients, the likelihood that the chain of information, which is crucial, doesn’t work appropriately is very, very high.”

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