The Nahtlos ECG Textile Carrier is a medical electrocardiogram (ECG) solution for continuous, long-term monitoring of cardiac activity. It records a medical long-term 3-lead ECG (over one week) with an existing standard ECG Holter.
How Nahtlos ECG Textile Carrier worksThe carrier consists of a ribbon system that can be easily adapted to different body shapes. Moreover, Nahtlos developed special clip-in electrodes based on its patented electrode structure. The ribbon and the clip-in electrodes result in a modular and highly adaptive ECG system. A wide range of body shapes and sizes can be adapted through the ribbon system, and the patient can put it on and take it off by themselves. With the clip-in electrodes, the electrode positions can be easily adjusted, or the system can even be expanded from a 3-lead to a 12-lead system. The innovation behind the Nahtlos ECG structure lies in a patented humidification system, which replaces conductive gel used in gel electrodes and provides up to 14 days of gold standard signal quality. The latter is not possible with dry electrodes, unless they are moistened by hand or with contact gel.
Current development of ECG Textile CarrierFrom the very beginning of the project, Nahtlos focused on developing a solution that would have an impact on the medical market. This means that the system should ensure a medical gold standard signal quality and a higher patient comfort than current medical gel electrodes (which has been the gold standard for 60 years). In addition, the solution must also be economical for the medical provider and fit into the medical process of long-term ECG. The latter is essential for a smart textile solution to establish itself in cardiology against gel electrodes.
Future development of Nahtlos ECG SolutionsThe Nahtlos ECG textile carrier is currently a working prototype at Technology Readiness Level (TRL) 7. As a next step, Nahtlos is confident of achieving gold standard signal quality and higher patient comfort than gel electrodes in a study at the Cantonal Hospital of St. Gallen (Fall 2021). Patients wear the ECG carrier (including standard Holter device) for one week after they have had a cardiac nerve ablation.
SmartX supportThe European SmartX Initiative has helped Nahtlos intensify the cooperation with their existing partner Zimmermann and find other European partners, such as Fritz Moll Textile Mills. Besides the networking aspect, experts from the SmartX team gave first-class presentations in the smart textile area, which helped Nahtlos to adapt our solution. Last but not least, the SmartX programme (since it is part of Horizon 2020) has helped marketing-wise for other projects, and the funding allowed to move forward faster with the development of the carrier.
Meet the TeamThe ECG textile carrier is developed by Nahtlos AG from Switzerland with medical yarn from W. Zimmermann GmbH & Co. KG and technical ribbons from Fritz Moll Textilwerke GmbH & Co.KG (both partners from Germany).