Feasibility and acceptability of a novel forehead-mounted wireless heart rate monitoring device in preterm babies.


Title Feasibility and acceptability of a novel forehead-mounted wireless heart rate monitoring device in preterm babies”
Authors Myhill J 1 , Pocock L 1 , Clarke P 1,2

1 Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Norwich, Norfolk, United Kingdom

2 Norwich Medical School, University of East Anglia, Norwich, Norfolk, United Kingdom

The presentation View the jENS NNUH Presentation September 2023
Abstract Background: Up to 10% of newborns require enhanced support or resuscitation at birth. Optimal management immediately after birth is critical to improve outcomes. While heart rate (HR) readily indicates response to interventions, HR monitoring via auscultation, umbilical cord palpation, ECG and pulse oximetry all have limitations in the delivery room (DR). We aimed to evaluate the feasibility and acceptability of using a novel wireless HR monitor in preterm infants in the DR and NICU.

Methods: The SurePulse VS (SurePulse Medical Ltd, Nottingham, UK) comprises a single-use thermoprotective Cap with an integrated optical sensor which, wirelessly via a module, transmits real-time pulse waveform to a display.(Figure) We undertook a prospective, observational evaluation of this device in preterm infants in our centre’s NICU and DR over a 4-month period. We used structured questionnaires to gather immediate staff feedback on the functionality and acceptability of the device for HR monitoring. We compared real-time recorded HR data post hoc with staff perceived utility of the SurePulse VS device.

Results: 31 babies underwent monitoring (10 NICU, 15 Theatre, 6 DR). Two with zero recorded data were excluded (device start button was not activated). Median (range) gestational age was 31+5 (24+6 to 36+6) weeks and birthweight 1715 (420 to 3055) grammes. 50 user questionnaires were completed. Questionnaire reported results: i) Ease of Cap fitting (86% easy or very easy); ii) HR signal reliability (86% all or most of the time); iii) HR acquisition time (48% <30 s, 72% <90 s, remaining 28% ≥120 s). In 1/29 babies a usable HR recording was not obtainable. Recorded data supported user questionnaire feedback (25/29 babies on reported acquisition time; 26/29 babies on reported reliability). When non-invasive respiratory equipment was deployed (n=9), 100% staff reported ‘easy’/‘very easy’ CPAP integration with the Cap.

Conclusion: This relatively new HR monitoring approach demonstrated feasibility for use in preterm babies in our tertiary-level centre, and good staff user acceptability. Wireless HR monitoring has the potential for assisting safe and effective monitoring by staff, while allowing parents greater autonomy during first cuddles with their babies in the DR, and during skin-to-skin/kangaroo care in the NICU.

Scroll to Top