Sensors free NICU babies from a nest of wires

Amy Paller, new mother Taschana Taylor, and baby Grace. (Credit: Northwestern)

(Futurity) — Soft, flexible wireless body sensors could replace the tangle of wire-based sensors that currently monitor babies in the NICU and pose a barrier to parent-baby cuddling and physical bonding.

The research team that created them recently completed a collection of first human studies on premature babies at Prentice Women’s Hospital and the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital in Chicago and conclude that the wireless infant sensors provided data as precise and accurate as those from traditional monitoring systems.

The wireless patches also are gentler on a newborn’s fragile skin and allow for more skin-to-skin contact with the parent.

The study—involving materials scientists, engineers, dermatologists, and pediatricians—appears in the journal Science. (…)

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