Doctors implant sensors for early heart failure alert during the first procedure on UK patient

Doctors implant sensors for early heart failure alert during the first procedure on UK patient Photo by Africa Studio

A patient in the UK become the first person in the country to get a device implanted for detecting the possibility of an early heart failure 

A patient in the UK became the first person in the country to be fitted with a device that allows the early detection of heart failure. 

The device which is a size of a pen lid is used by doctors to get alerts if the condition of the patient worsens.  

The procedure takes only 45 minutes and a small catheter is used to implant the device.  

“The procedure is part of a cutting-edge international research study which intends to prove this new way of monitoring and treating heart failure patients is safe and effective”, said a spokesperson from University Hospital Southampton (UHM), as cited by the Independent.  

The procedure was pioneered by consultant cardiologists Dr. Andrew Flett and Dr. Peter Cowburn who fit the device known as FIRE1 System during a trial at the UHM.  

“This innovative new device has the potential to improve patient safety and outcomes in the management of patients with chronic heart failure and we are delighted to be the first site in the UK to implant as part of this ground-breaking study”, said a statement by Dr. Flett.  

He added, “We have now successfully implanted a second patient with the device, and data is already being transmitted which we look forward to receiving so that we can intervene earlier in a bid to reduce hospital visits and keep patients well for longer.”  

“Heart failure is a significant burden on the NHS and so pioneering advances such as this could help to reduce that pressure.” 

“It is estimated that one in five people will develop heart failure and earlier intervention when patients start to deteriorate can make a huge difference and the hope is that this new FIRE1 device will do just that. 

“It is an exciting new development for patients with this condition.” 

Following the surgical procedure, the patients have to wear an external belt across their abdomen for a period of one or two minutes every day.  

The implanted sensor is then activated by the belt using “radiofrequency energy”. 

The data collected is then sent from the house of the patient to the heart failure team located at the UHS, where the team will be alerted incase they see any early warning signs.  

According to the estimates by UHS, over 700 patients are admitted with heart related conditions every year, while over 900,000 people are estimated by the NHS to be living in the UK with heart failure.


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Written by

Imran Khan