OHSU first in Oregon to implant newly approved miniature heart monitor

02/28/14  Portland, Ore.

Smallest wireless monitor of its kind provides long-term monitoring of irregular heartbeats

Oregon Health & Science University’s Knight Cardiovascular Institute today became the first in Oregon, and among the first in the nation, to implant in a patient the smallest cardiac monitoring device available.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the Reveal LINQ Insertable Cardiac Monitor, made by Medtronic Inc., last week.

“We are thrilled to be able to offer our patients this cutting-edge technology and peace of mind,” said Joaquin Cigarroa, M.D., associate chief of clinical affairs for the OHSU Knight Cardiovascular Institute. “Not only will this miniature heart monitor be more physically comfortable for patients, but it will also bring comfort with the knowledge that we are closely monitoring at-risk patients to find and treat dangerous heart rhythms.”

The miniature heart monitor, one-third the size of a AAA battery, is implanted under the skin to help detect potentially fatal heart muscle misfires, such as atrial fibrillation, before they become deadly. The device allows physicians to continuously and wirelessly monitor a patient’s heart for up to three years. Patients with this monitor can safely undergo magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) if needed.

“Implantation of this device could not be easier, for both patient and physician, and it is an invaluable tool for identifying patients who are high-risk and providing swift, effective treatment,” said Charles Henrikson, M.D., the cardiologist at the OHSU Knight Cardiovascular Institute who successfully implanted the cardiac monitor. The device is placed using a minimally invasive procedure in an outpatient clinic, which simplifies the experience for both physicians and their patients.

The device will allow OHSU physicians to closely monitor patients with increased risk for cardiac arrhythmias and patients who experience symptoms such as dizziness, palpitation, fainting and chest pain that may suggest a cardiac arrhythmia.

About OHSU Knight Cardiovascular Institute

The OHSU Knight Cardiovascular Institute is an integrated center of translational research, clinical care, education and disease prevention. The institute is dedicated to becoming the world’s best at translating research into clinical innovations that benefit patients by attacking heart disease from every angle, before conception and throughout a person’s lifetime. The OHSU Knight Cardiovascular Institute was established through a visionary $125 million philanthropic investment from Nike co-founder and chairman Phil Knight and his wife, Penny. It is the largest gift ever recorded to advance cardiovascular health in the United States.

About OHSU

Oregon Health & Science University is the state's only public academic health and research university. As one of Oregon's largest employers with more than 14,000 employees, OHSU's size contributes to its ability to provide many services and community support not found anywhere else in the state. OHSU serves patients from every corner of Oregon and is a conduit for learning for more than 4,400 students and trainees. OHSU is the source of more than 200 community outreach programs that bring health and education services to each county in the state.