Monitoring Hearts From Far Away

Monitoring Hearts From Far Away

Reported August 24, 2009

COLUMBUS, Ohio (Ivanhoe Newswire) — Here are some cold heart facts: Our heart is the size of two fists. It’s about 78 percent water and beats about 100,000 times a day. If it beats a lot more than that — or a lot less — you could be suffering from a condition called atrial fibrillation and not even know it until you end up in the hospital. Doctors found a way to monitor patients hearts from miles away.


While Max Bucey takes it easy, his heart could be racing!


“I had some sensations above my left side, some flashes,” Bucey told Ivanhoe. “I got in the car. I kept going straight. Apparently, I passed out. I was on the wrong side of the road and I hit a telephone poll.”

Bucey suffered a stroke. Months later, doctors want to know what caused it. He was the first person in the United States to have a new tracking device implanted in his chest.

“I didn’t realize I was the first,” Bucey said.

“We’re really doing this study to prevent the recurrence of stroke,” Mahmoud Houmsse, M.D., an electrophysiologist at The Ohio State University Medical Center in Columbus, Ohio, told Ivanhoe.



Doctors at The Ohio Sate University Medical Center implanted a monitoring device near Bucey’s heart to alert them when it’s speeding up or slowing down.

“It has a sensor, and it senses the heart rhythm and sends that wirelessly to base, collecting data, and also to hand-held devices,” Dr. Houmsse explained.

Learning what caused Bucey’s stroke will help reduce the risk of suffering another one. For now, Bucey is watching his diet and cutting back on salt.

“In the last five weeks, I’ve lost 26 pounds,” he said.

Taking his heart health into his own hands.

One of the leading causes of stroke is atrial fibrillation. That’s when the heart speeds up or slows downs to the point where clots can form. This monitor has been very successful at detecting the ocndition and helping patients avoid a second stroke. There are no restrictions on how far a patient can travel with the device.


Doug Flowers
Medical Center Communications
Ohio State University Medical Center
(614) 293-3737