Georgia Tech researchers develop wireless implantable vascular monitoring system

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georgia techResearcher Woon-Hong Yeo and his collaborators at the Georgia Institute of Technology (Atlanta, USA) are trying to improve the odds for vascular patients with development of an implantable soft electronic monitoring system. Their new device, according to a Georgia Tech press release, consists of a smart stent and printed soft sensors, is capable of wireless real-time monitoring of hemodynamics without batteries or circuits.

“This electronic system is designed to wirelessly deliver hemodynamic data, including arterial pressure, pulse, and flow, to an external data acquisition system, and it is super small and thin, which is why we can use a catheter to deliver it, anywhere inside the body,” said Yeo, whose team released its study recently in the journal Science Advances.

Yeo added, smiling, “It’s like a stent with multiple tricks up its sleeve.”

For example, when this device is installed in a patient with atherosclerosis, in addition to expanding and preventing the artery from narrowing, like a traditional stent, restoring normal blood flow, it will also provide a constant flow of data.

“Now, once you have deployed a stent, you’re not sure if the problem was resolved and patients may come back with the same issue,” Yeo said. “It can be a defect of the stent, or an issue with stent deployment, or perhaps a problem with the patient’s blood flow.”

And the current standard way to monitor all of that is with an angiogram. That can be expensive and in rare instances, particularly with patients also struggling with diabetes, the dyes and radiation used in angiogram imaging can cause cancer. Yeo’s system seeks to circumvent the need for an angiogram or other imaging requirements.

His wireless smart stent platform, integrated with soft sensors, is operated by inductive coupling to offer wireless real-time monitoring that can detect a wide range of vascular conditions.

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