GE Healthcare introduced the MARS Virtual Sleep Lab (VSL), a device geared to provide a streamlined view of quantitative cardiac and sleep apnea analysis from any GE-monitored inpatient bed. MARS VSL, which, according to GE, will help enhance speed of diagnosis of OSA, was featured at the American College of Cardiology 59th Annual Scientific Session, held March 14 to 16 in Atlanta.

Integrating a sleep disorder diagnostic tool into hospital cardiac care represents an important advance, as OSA impacts up to 50% of all heart disease patients.1 When sleep disorders are diagnosed and treated early, it has been shown to improve cardiac conditions. Left undiagnosed, sleep apnea can increase heart disease risks.

More than 80% of individuals with moderate-to-severe OSA have not been clinically diagnosed.2 Powered by the WideMed Ltd Morpheus Hx sleep apnea diagnosis program, MARS VSL enables OSA diagnosis right from the hospital bed. This transforms inpatient rooms into virtual sleep labs, and enables a bedside diagnosis by improving utilization of monitored data to provide diagnostic information. According to a recent Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine study, connecting the WideMed automated sleep analysis system to hospital monitors achieves results highly correlated with the standard test conducted in sleep labs—polysomnography.3

“With MARS VSL, hospitals can quickly and effectively test cardiac patients for sleep apnea, utilizing existing physiological data for retrospective analysis,” said Dr Matthias Weber, vice president and GM of Global Diagnostic Cardiology at GE Healthcare. “Eliminating this delay in sleep apnea diagnosis supports GE’s healthymagination vision for enhancing outcomes, enabling timely access to treatment, and, ultimately, reducing costs.”

MARS VSL automatically reports on clinical data that is critical for making a sleep apnea diagnosis, such as apnea hypopnea index, sleep staging, and respiratory events. Following a sleep apnea diagnosis, an AutoPAP device can be immediately prescribed while the patient is still in the hospital. This increases the chance that OSA patients can begin treatment before other complications develop.

“MARS VSL will help the sleep community reach previously undiagnosed patients, helping improve outcomes by detection of sleep apnea in a critical-care setting, and put the patient on the road to the appropriate sleep-related therapy,” said Guarav Agarwal, GM of Respiratory Care at GE Healthcare. “Furthermore, MARS VSL will enable management of the patient rather than the management of the symptoms of this life-threatening disease.”

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