Patients at a Worcestershire Hospital have started using a new wearable device to help detect those at risk of a stroke and improve treatment waiting times.

Worcestershire Royal Hospital is using a wearable electrocardiogram (ECG) patch, called Zio XT, to support stroke patients.

The compact adhesive patch records patients' heart rhythms for up to 14 days, gathering key data about potential causes of stroke.



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The stroke team at the hospital applies the patch to patients' chests before reading and analysing electrical activity in the heart through Artificial Intelligence (AI).

Patients can even exercise and shower with the patch on, and remove the device without returning to the hospital.

Stroke is the fourth highest cause of death in the U.K, with Atrial Fibrillation (AF) contributing to one in five strokes and often leading to higher rates of disability and death.

Many patients are not aware they have AF until after a stroke or Transient Ischaemic Attack (TIA).

The Zio XT patch can accurately identify the condition and provide faster and more detailed data, which enables earlier commencement of oral anticoagulant therapy treatment, which can slash the risk of stroke by two thirds.

The hospital has fitted over 100 Zio XT patches as part of a six-month trial, with patient feedback extremely positive.

David Gisbourne, from Evesham, one of the first patients to use the patch, said: "It was very straightforward to put on and remove.

"It didn’t affect my sleep and it really wasn’t inconvenient at all – most of the time I had completely forgotten I’d got it on."

Following its use, the device’s ECG recordings are analyzed by AI under the supervision of cardiographic technicians.

A full report is supplied to the stroke team for analysis and interpretation, usually within four days of patients finishing wearing the device.

Ward manager of the Acute Stroke Unit at the hospital, Sanjula Dhungana added: “We’ve been using the new Zio device for stroke patients for a few months and it’s really helped us put patients first by getting their results more quickly and accurately. When we fit these for patients, they’re provided with a feedback survey which helps us to improve the experience and outcomes for future patients.”