Nearly 6 million people in the United States suffer from heart failure, a condition in which a person's heart does not pump efficiently and they develop fluid in their lungs and legs, causing shortness of breath and fatigue even with everyday activities. At Moses H. Cone Memorial Hospital, approximately 125 heart failure patients are treated each month, but it can be difficult to tell if a patient still has fluid in their lungs before you send them home. To help the heart failure team, Cone Health became the first in the country to use a new vest technology in the hospital setting that measures the amount of fluid in the lungs. Since then, Cone Health and Triad HealthCare Network have partnered together to bring this technology to the community by purchasing additional vests for use by non-cardiac specialists, resulting in broader access to care for heart failure patients and helping avoid extra trips to the emergency room.
The ReDS™ System is a vest that uses radar technology developed in the military to measure the exact percentage of fluid in the lungs. It takes as little as 90 seconds to measure a patient’s fluid levels, and can be worn over clothing. Using the data from the vests in the Emergency Room or on the hospital ward, providers can determine who has extra fluid in their lungs and needs more treatment, and who doesn’t and can be safely sent home. The vests provide a more accurate reading and better understanding of a patient’s condition, allowing the provider to determine the most appropriate next steps in the treatment plan.
By providing more vests and training non-specialists to use and report results, Cone Health and Triad HealthCare Network aim to provide preventative, non-invasive care in a cost-effective way. Through their partnership, we continue to improve the management and care for heart failure patients in the community.
Dr. Daniel Bensimhon is the medical director of Cone Health’s Advanced Heart Failure and Cardio-Oncology Programs, and a cardiologist at Cone Health Medical Group HeartCare at Church Street. Dr. Bensimhon is a 1998 graduate of University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. He completed his residency in internal medicine and fellowship in cardiology both at Duke University Medical Center.