[Telemetry in the clinical setting]

Herzschrittmacherther Elektrophysiol. 2008 Sep;19(3):146-54. doi: 10.1007/s00399-008-0017-2. Epub 2008 Oct 25.
[Article in German]


Telemetric cardiac monitoring was invented in 1949 by Norman J Holter. Its clinical use started in the early 1960s. In the hospital, biotelemetry allows early mobilization of patients with cardiovascular risk and addresses the need for arrhythmia or oxygen saturation monitoring. Nowadays telemetry either uses vendor-specific UHF band broadcasting or the digital ISM band (Industrial, Scientific, and Medical Band) standardized Wi-Fi network technology. Modern telemetry radio transmitters can measure and send multiple physiological parameters like multi-channel ECG, NIPB and oxygen saturation. The continuous measurement of oxygen saturation is mandatory for the remote monitoring of patients with cardiac pacemakers. Real 12-lead ECG systems with diagnostic quality are an advantage for monitoring patients with chest pain syndromes or in drug testing wards. Modern systems are light-weight and deliver a maximum of carrying comfort due to optimized cable design. Important for the system selection is a sophisticated detection algorithm with a maximum reduction of artifacts. Home-monitoring of implantable cardiac devices with telemetric functionalities are becoming popular because it allows remote diagnosis of proper device functionality and also optimization of the device settings. Continuous real-time monitoring at home for patients with chronic disease may be possible in the future using Digital Video Broadcasting Terrestrial (DVB-T) technology in Europe, but is currently not yet available.

Publication types

  • English Abstract
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Arrhythmias, Cardiac / diagnosis*
  • Diagnosis, Computer-Assisted / instrumentation
  • Diagnosis, Computer-Assisted / methods
  • Electrocardiography / instrumentation*
  • Electrocardiography / methods*
  • Equipment Design
  • Humans
  • Remote Consultation / instrumentation*
  • Remote Consultation / methods*
  • Telemetry / instrumentation*
  • Telemetry / methods*