Modules, Connectivity, Platforms

Restech: Helping Physicians Manage Patients with Chronic Respiratory Diseases

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), more than 300 million people worldwide have asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and other chronic respiratory conditions. COPD alone accounts for roughly 5% of all deaths.

Healthcare providers frequently use oscillometry to assess the lung function of people with chronic respiratory diseases. Patients breathe normally into a device that uses gentle pressure oscillations to measure airway resistance and lung elasticity. These insights help physicians provide better treatment plans.

Oscillometry also gives healthcare providers a powerful way to monitor patients recovering from COVID-19. For example, after discharge from the hospital, patients can use the device at home, with their physician remotely monitoring the data. Remote home monitoring helps balance the shortage of hospital beds and caregivers with the need to quickly identify relapsing patients who need follow-up care.

The same approach can be used to remotely monitor and manage other types of chronic respiratory diseases, including COPD and severe asthma. Moreover, researchers can provide clinical trial participants with oscillometry devices at home, enabling a quick and reliable lung function assessment without direct medical supervision.

Portable Oscillometry Devices Using IoT

Over a decade ago, Restech recognized these benefits and began developing a suite of devices and services to monitor respiratory conditions and securely share oscillometry data with healthcare providers. One of those devices is RESMON PRO DIARY, a portable oscillometry device that uses cellular networks to upload patient information securely to RESOLVE, Restech’s proprietary web portal. Through RESOLVE, doctors and caregivers can access and view patient data, schedule appointments with patients or remotely manage changes in treatment should they be warranted by worsening trends detected by proprietary algorithms embedded into RESMON PRO DIARY devices.

RESMON PRO DIARY for home monitoring of high-risk COPD patients is currently distributed in Italy, Germany, United Kingdom, France, Netherlands and Austria by Vivisol Srl. Moreover, Restech solutions for home monitoring are used in several clinical trials by pharmaceutical companies and other research studies in Europe and Australia.

RESMON PRO DIARY is the only CE-labeled medical device intended to be used at home for unsupervised lung function monitoring. It also allows an easy integration of other patient-centered measures, such as blood oxygen saturation or the collection of patient-reported symptoms.

Our proprietary algorithms have been clinically tested for effectiveness in large multi-center European studies and trials involving more than 300 COPD patients. Such algorithms are now incorporated into RESMON PRO DIARY devices to provide physicians another powerful tool for managing chronic respiratory diseases.

Alessandro Gobbi, Restech co-founder and COO

Remote Patient Monitoring Technology for Managing COPD

RESMON PRO DIARY can be integrated with a pulse oximeter to detect hypoxemia, which may afflict people with chronic lung conditions such as COPD and, more recently, those brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. Organ damage can occur when the body’s oxygen level drops below 80%, so identifying a downward trend early on is key for helping patients before disability or death occurs. Indeed, the combination of pulse oximetry and oscillometry measurements offers the most comprehensive and tailored set of parameters needed for home monitoring of respiratory patients.

A reliable, high-performance cellular connection is critical for ensuring that healthcare providers always have access to patient data. Cellular also provides more deployment flexibility because RESMON PRO DIARY works in homes where patients don’t have Wi-Fi, cable, DSL or fiber. That’s particularly valuable for providing respiratory care to people in low- and middle-income communities, where the WHO says over 90% of COPD-related deaths occur.

Installing a monitoring device in patient homes means that it should work anywhere, even in remote locations. These are the places where the service offered via the RESMON PRO DIARY has the most value.

Alessandro Gobbi, Restech co-founder and COO

The Telit Advantage

To ensure reliable connectivity in dozens of countries, Restech chose Telit’s UC864 module, which uses EDGE and UMTS/HSPDA. When mobile operators began phasing out those 3G technologies in favor of 4G, Restech initiated the process to upgrade the RESMON PRO DIARY with Telit’s ME910C1-WW, an LTE module designed to meet unique requirements such as ultra-compact form factors and long battery life.

Compliant with 3GPP Release 14, the ME910C1-WW uses Power Saving Mode (PSM) and extended Discontinuous Reception (eDRX), so devices to wake up periodically and deliver only small amounts of data necessary before returning to sleep mode. The module also has a maximum coupling loss (MCL) of up to +15 dB/+20 dB and support for Power Class 3 (output power up to 23 dBm) on LTE-M and NB-IoT, all of which helps ensure reliable indoor connectivity

Telit also provides the SIM cards for RESMON PRO DIARY, freeing Restech from the time and expense of managing them. The SIM card service is part of Telit’s connectivity solution, including Telit deviceWISE® Cloud, a cloud-based management tool suite. Provided as a platform-as-a-service (PaaS), Telit deviceWISE Cloud enables Restech to quickly and inexpensively deploy RESMON PRO DIARY devices and manage their connectivity.

Restech is also planning to integrate into its monitoring service Telit OneEdge™, an award-winning software system embedded in modules such as the ME910C1-WW. With Telit OneEdge, Restech receives pre-provisioned, thoroughly tested and network-certified modules, so they’re ready to connect as soon as they’re activated. Telit OneEdge will also provide Restech with a single-pane console to manage all its devices, connectivity and application data.

Telit is a reliable and certified manufacturer of radio solutions for mobile equipment that provided us the flexibility needed for a quick integration of modems into our application and allowed us to meet our time-to-market expectations. The SIM data plans offered as a complement to their hardware represented a plus for the deployment of this project.

Alessandro Gobbi, Restech co-founder and COO
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