Medical Advancements That Promote Patient Independence

This infographic was created by Coapt Engineering

Here are some medical and technological breakthroughs that help patients remain independent.

Remote Patient Monitoring Equipment

Advances in communication technologies have been especially beneficial to connect with and care for patients. Examples of remote patient monitoring include:

  • Medical alert technology: Medical alert wristbands and pendants are not new. You might have seen TV commercials where a distressed person falls and is unable to get up. Such devices that once acted merely as two-way communication instruments now incorporate advanced technologies, such as gyroscopes and barometric pressure sensors, that detect when the wearer has fallen. And, if no additional movement is recognized by the device—possibly indicating a loss of consciousness—the operators monitoring the device can summon medical help to the wearer’s address.
  • Bluetooth-enabled health equipment: Many types of Bluetooth-enabled devices are available to transfer real-time medical data to one’s cell phone and simultaneously send that information to his or her physician. For instance, Bluetooth-enabled glucose meters are designed for individuals with diabetes. They communicate blood sugar levels to cell phones, helping patients know when they should administer insulin to themselves.

Bluetooth-enabled blood pressure cuffs are beneficial for patients with high blood pressure because those patients can suffer strokes and heart attacks if their blood pressure becomes too high. Conversely, those same high-tech blood pressure cuffs are also valuable for individuals who take prescription medications that have the side effect of lowering blood pressure. If one’s blood pressure drops too low, loss of consciousness can result.

During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, Bluetooth-enabled digital pulse oximeters became sought-after devices because they check and log patients’ pulse and blood oxygen saturation levels. When the oxygen in one’s blood falls too low, a condition known as hypoxemia occurs. Symptoms include shortness of breath, wheezing, coughing, and confusion. Left untreated, hypoxemia can lead to organ failure and death.

Many more high-tech medical advancements are available today—such as bionic arm and leg prosthetics for individuals with limb differences, 3D-printed body parts, and even bioprinted living tissue—that can enable all patients to continue feeling safe in their homes. Learn more from the accompanying resource.

Contributing Author: Erica Karlson

Author bio: Erica Karlson has over 15 years of experience working in device sales and has developed an expertise that allows for consultancy and partnership, beyond mere sales. Thanks to her background in biology and chemistry, her decade of experience working in both upper-limb and lower-limb prosthetics, and her four years at Coapt specializing in myoelectric control, she has developed a skill set unique in the field. She serves as Coapt’s Director of Sales after years of experience within the O&P industry representing Össur, Bioness, and Touch Bionics.

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