New 24/7 blood pressure monitoring system launched

A new 24/7 Optical Blood Pressure Monitoring System (OBPM), worn as a wrist band to collect data to better inform the diagnosis and management of hypertension, has been launched.

The medical innovation estimates blood pressure automatically and painlessly by analysing signals from a wearer’s wrist throughout the day. These are generated by the changes in diameter of arteries that occur with each heartbeat.

The device, called Aktiia, has gained its CE Mark as a Class IIa medical device. It means that the automated blood pressure monitor has committed to conforming with the high safety, health and environmental protection standards of the Europe.

Readings from the innovation can be gathered during the day and at night while wearers sleep, leaving users undisturbed.

Data from the device can then be viewed via a free companion app, which can be shared with both clinicians and family members.

Its aim is to assist physicians by providing insight into a patient’s blood pressure patterns. This can consequently inform diagnosis and better management of hypertension, as well as alerting users to sudden or concerning changes.

As traditional methods of blood pressure monitoring can be associated with inconvenience and discomfort, this device could enable more patients to have greater oversight and control of their condition.

Dr.Neil Poulter, Professor of Preventive Cardiovascular Medicine at Imperial College London, says: “Hypertension is the number one cause of cardiovascular disease and premature death worldwide.

“Accurate blood pressure measurement and particularly 24/7 monitoring of blood pressure is increasingly recognised as being important to improve the diagnosis and control of raised blood pressure, thereby improving patient outcomes.

“Tracking blood pressure over long periods, without alerting the patient represents a potential game changer in the diagnosis and monitoring of hypertension.”

Aktiia says its device is the ‘first product’ to ‘automatically measure blood pressure over the course of hours, days and weeks without any effort required by the wearer’.

The core technology was developed at the Swiss Center for Electronics and Microtechnology (CSEM), with Aktiia founded in 2018 by Dr Mattia Bertschi and Dr Josep Sola.