Covidien received CE Mark approval and is launching in Europe its Nellcor Respiration Rate System which, in addition to pulse oximetry and pulse rate monitoring, can keep track of the patient’s respiration rate continuously through one finger sensor. Previously, respiratory rate monitoring required chest-based sensors or under-the-mattress devices that, though wireless, are still additional pieces of equipment to have to keep an eye on.
The company claims that the technology provides an accuracy of ± 1 breath per minute when measured against traditional capnographs.
Here’s a bit from Covidien explaining the background of how the new technology works:
The Respiration Rate software uses pulse oximetry technology, sensors and workflows to derive respiration rate based on the changes in the photoplethysmogram (pleth) waveform that occur as a result of breathing. Breathing causes changes in the cardiovascular, respiratory and autonomic nervous systems and results in changes in the pleth waveform. These modulations can be used to calculate respiration rate.
Product page: Nellcor Respiration Rate…