Clinical-grade AFE measures four vital signs

The MAX86178 from Analog Devices simplifies the design of wearable remote patient monitoring (RPM) devices by measuring four vital signs with one triple-system vital signs AFE. This single-chip AFE combines three measurement systems (optical, ECG and bio-impedance) to obtain four common vital signs: electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG), heart rate (ECG or optical PPG), blood-oxygen saturation (SpO₂) and respiration rate (using BioZ). The device allows synchronised optical PPG and ECG timing for derived health metrics.

With three clinical-grade subsystems integrated into one IC, the triple system AFE replaces discrete implementations by combining an optical PPG sub-system to measure heart rate and SpO₂, a single-lead ECG sub-system, and a biopotential and bioimpedance (BioZ) sub-system to measure respiration rate. It allows small vital signs devices by fitting those multiple functions into a 2.6mm x 2.8mm package.

“By integrating three healthcare subsystems on one piece of silicon, Analog Devices builds on its DNA and delivers this sensor-fusion product,” said Andrew Burt, executive business manager of the Industrial and Healthcare Business Unit at Maxim Integrated, now part of Analog Devices. “This AFE is resonating with the medical community because it presents new possibilities for chronic disease management, contagious disease diagnosis and remote monitoring. The MAX86178 enables small body-worn devices that can improve healthcare delivery and lower costs by keeping people out of the hospital.”