Medtronic, St. Jude unveil wireless monitoring devices

Rivals Medtronic (NYSE: MDT) and St. Jude Medical (NYSE: STJ) have released similar wireless transmission devices designed to send data from patients' cardiac devices to physicians.

Medtronic announced Monday that it is offering the new Medtronic M-Link cellular accessory, which gives cardiac device patients the option to securely send information stored in their implanted devices to their clinics through the CareLink Network using cellular signals rather than a landline. "The M-Link cellular accessory is making remote monitoring accessible to a greater number of eligible patients," says Pat Mackin, president of the cardiac rhythm disease management business and senior vice president at Medtronic.

St. Jude announced the launch of its Wireless USB Adaptor for the [email protected] transmitter the same day. The system allows patient data from an implantable cardiac device to be wirelessly downloaded and securely transmitted through the phone for review by a physician. "For patients who either prefer to use cellular technology or do not have access to a standard phone line, this product provides an alternative solution for secure data transmission," says Dr. David Sandler, director of electrophysiology at the Oklahoma Heart Institute in Tulsa. "The Wireless USB Adaptor offers a reliable, portable remote monitoring option for patients who frequently travel."

According to report from the CDC published in January, preliminary results from the January-June 2009 National Health Interview Survey indicate the number of American homes that only use mobile phones is on the rise. Some 22.7 percent of U.S. homes only used mobile phones during the first six months of 2009, notes mobihealth news.

MedCity News points that it may be tempting to call the transmitters competing products, but each works only with the respective company's proprietary medical devices, such as defibrillators and pacemakers. Both companies want to capitalize on the market for remote patient-monitoring services that use mobile networks, MedCity notes. A report last month from Jupiter Research estimated the market's size at $1.9 billion in 2014, mobihealth news reports.

- read the Medtronic statement and the St. Jude release
- see the story from MedCity News
check out the report from mobihealth news
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