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Bozena Kaminska

Bozena Kaminska holds the tiny, flexible biosensors being tested at Burnaby Hospital.

Tiny technology in hospital trials

September 7, 2007

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Tiny technology invented by SFU engineering professor Bozena Kaminska is undergoing extensive testing on patients at Burnaby Hospital.

Kaminska’s disposable, wearable, wireless biosensors, only the size of a quarter, are powerful and sophisticated hospital diagnostic and monitoring tools. They can detect and monitor physiological signals in real time, including heart rate, mechanical heart function and invisible signs of heart disease.

The biosensors incorporate mixed-technology electronics developed in Kaminska’s CiBER lab at the Burnaby campus. CiBER is working with Nokia to develop a system for transmitting the physiological monitoring to a cellular phone that sends warning and emergency messages to dedicated phone numbers at a hospital, care provider or doctor’s office.

Kaminska says the tiny devices hold the promise of helping to save lives, improve quality of life and reduce health-care costs because of their increased accuracy, faster analysis and unobtrusiveness.

“We want to help the rising number of seniors who are at risk of developing heart disease by creating a new generation of medical devices that promote prevention and early diagnosis,” says Kaminska, a senior Canada Research Chair. “This technology will help target at-risk individuals sooner and ensure they see a specialist early.”

The devices will be introduced September 13–16 at WIRED NextFest 2007 in Los Angeles. The event will feature 160 of the world’s most innovative emerging technologies. SFU will be one of only two Canadian universities at the invitation-only international exhibition.
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