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Health Tech: Fetal Monitor Has No Belts or Wires

During labor, doctors must monitor the vital signs of both mother and child using monitors that can be awkward and uncomfortable. But there’s a better way.

When an expectant mother goes into labor, it’s important to monitor the vital signs of both mother and child to watch out for signs of physical distress. Traditional fetal monitors rely on sensors that are strapped to the woman’s belly, which can be uncomfortable during labor. The sensors are also connected to a monitoring device using wires, which can further restrict the mother’s movements. A new fetal monitor system from Philips uses adhesive patches to place sensors on the mother’s abdomen, and then relies on wireless communications to send vital sign data to the base station monitor. The result is a sensor system that is more comfortable and convenient. It measures both ECG and EMG data for both mother and child, as well as contractions. The system can even be used for remote monitoring prior to labor if needed.

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Written by Alfred Poor

Alfred Poor is an "Into Tomorrow" Contributing Correspondent, health tech speaker, writer and the founding Editor of Health Tech Insider: a website and industry newsletter that covers wearable and mobile technology for health and medical applications. With more than 2,400 articles published on the site, he has a broad perspective of where the global industry stands today and where it’s headed... Into Tomorrow.

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