February 18, 2011

Wireless Monitoring Reduces Risk of Hospitalization for Heart Failure

(Ivanhoe Newswire) "“ Use of an implanted device to monitor the condition of heart failure patients reduces the rate of hospitalization by 39 percent, according to this study. These findings also indicate a low device failure rate, suggesting that the devices can be safely used and therefore significantly reduce the cost of care.

The implanted device works by measuring the pressures within the pulmonary arteries (those connecting the heart to the lungs). In the study, patients with moderately serious heart failure and a previous hospital admission for heart failure were enrolled in 64 centers in the USA. Patients were assigned to either use of the wireless device, that measured pulmonary artery pressure daily in addition to standard care (treatment group); or to standard care only (monitoring of patient-reported changes in symptoms and daily weights) in the control group.

In 6 months, 83 heart-failure-related hospitalizations were reported in the treatment group (270 patients) compared with 120 in the control group (280 patients), giving a 30% reduction in hospitalization in the treatment group. During the entire follow-up, the treatment group had a 39% reduction in heart-failure related hospitalization compared with the control group (153 vs. 253 events). Only three patients in each group had device-related or system-related complications, none of which led to serious consequences. No patients experienced pressure-sensor failures in their devices.

"The CHAMPION trial represents the first positive, randomized, adequately powered clinical trial of implantable haemodynamic monitoring in patients with moderately symptomatic heart failure. The addition of information about pulmonary artery pressure to clinical signs and symptoms allows for improved heart-failure management and leads to a reduction in heart-failure-related hospitalizations," the authors were quoted as saying.

SOURCE: The Lancet, published online February 17, 2011