Blood flow monitoring system to reduce risks during heart surgery

A unique haemodynamic (blood flow) monitoring system which will help to minimise the risk of complications during cardiovascular surgery is being developed by Leeds-based medical devices company, Medics Research Ltd.

Described as “the most significant breakthrough in measuring key cardiovascular parameters in over 30 years”, the HeartSmart® technology was presented to investors attending the White Rose BioScience Forum in York yesterday (03 November).

Limitations and risks attaching to existing monitoring technologies mean that the majority of heart surgery patients are monitored for blood pressure only and not for other key cardiovascular variables, such as cardiac output, which provides vital information about the delivery of oxygen to the patient’s tissues and organs.

The standard method of assessing cardiac output is via the pulmonary artery catheter. This technology is over thirty years old and has key, potentially fatal risks associated with it, making its use restricted to only the most critically ill patients.

Based on over twenty years’ research by Medics Research founder, cardiovascular physiologist Ken Davies, HeartSmart® provides clinicians with information about a patient’s cardiovascular output prior to, during and following surgery.

The technology comprises software that will work in conjunction with existing hospital equipment. At its core is a set of unique analytically derived and clinically proven algorithms that define the relationship between all key blood flow variables. These combine to provide a mechanism for the continuous monitoring of cardiac output.

Outlining the development of HeartSmart®, Davies said: “The supply of this crucial information will minimise the risk of adverse events arising from surgery, and will play a significant role in speeding up recovery times and the length of time in hospital. HeartSmart® is the most advanced haemodynamic system in the world. It will save lives, it will save time and it will save money.”

Medics Research is seeking investment in the region of £750,000 to complete the commercialisation of its groundbreaking product.

This is the first time that the White Rose Bioscience Forum has held an investment track. The track was run Connect Yorkshire, an organisation which specialises in providing training and mentoring to high tech companies in the region to help them achieve investment readiness.

Simon Browning, managing director of Connect Yorkshire said: “The HeartSmart® technology shows how a scientist can combine new technology and research to meet a crucial market need. Heart disease is something that has affected everyone in some way, and this innovative range of products could make an enormous difference to hundreds of thousands of people – not only the medical community and the patients themselves, but their relatives and friends too.”

Simon Donoghue, acting chief executive of the White Rose University Consortium said: “This session has demonstrated to delegates the wealth of novel bioscience research being undertaken in the region. We hope that this opportunity will result in further funding for the companies allowing their technologies to be developed further.”

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