Bio-patch monitors body's electrical signals
23 April 2013
The Bio-patch sensor developed by researchers at Stockholm's KTH
Royal Institute of Technology measures bioelectrical signals through
the skin, gathering data on brain, heart or muscle, depending on
where it is placed.
With a wireless connection, the patient can analyse the readings
in their smartphone, or send the data via the internet to a
healthcare professional for diagnosis.
Geng Yang, a researcher at JRC iPack centre at KTH, says, “On the
chest it provides electrocardiography (ECG), on the skull it
measures brainwaves (EEC), and on the forearm it can measure muscle
response to stimulation from the nervous system (EMG),” he says. It
also has a built-in sensor that constantly monitors body
The thinking behind Bio-patch is that health care can be moved
out of the hospitals and into the home, Yang says, “Bio-patch is a
step towards what is known as self-care, which is valuable
especially for patients discharged after an operation, or for the
elderly living unassisted,” he says.
The Bio-patch can also aid detection of brain disease, by
generating EMG data that helps physicians distinguish muscle changes
from neurological problems. A paper thin battery energy source in
the Bio-patch helps make the patch comfortable and as small as
“Patient comfort will be an important success factor for the next
generation of medical technology,” Yang says. “All electronic
components are mounted on a flexible foil, which makes it easy to
attach to the skin and to wear comfortably. Bio-patch is easy to
attach to the skin and can be discarded after use.
Bio-patch has resulted in several publications in prestigious
scientific journals and successful development of a prototype. Yang
says several companies have already shown interest in the product.