Liaison(s): Alex Holland
Edwards Lifesciences is the global leader in the science of heart valves and hemodynamic monitoring. Founded in 1958, Edwards has grown into a global company with a presence in approximately 100 countries and more than 7,800 employees around the world. Edwards focuses on medical technologies that address large and growing patient populations in which there are significant unmet clinical needs, such as structural heart disease and critical care monitoring. Edward’s hemodynamic monitoring instruments measure cardiovascular parameters that are derived from sensor data. Typically, sensors are attached to, or integrated within catheters, which are inserted into blood vessels. Catheter associated sensors then generate signals that allow healthcare personal to make conclusions about patients’ health. Sophisticated algorithms within Edward’s patient monitoring software interpret these cardiovascular signals so that advanced health information can be displayed. Unfortunately, the only way Edwards can test these algorithms and their patient monitoring devices is through the use of animal studies and recorded patient data from a limited patient population. Further, many of Edward’s available test benches are limited in function and cannot be used for complex R&D investigations. Yet test bench analysis is essential in understanding the various cardiovascular signals found in the field. The core goal of the Edwards TMP was to facilitate software design, implementation, and testing of a new biomedical engineering test bench which would permit the testing and validation of Edward’s products. The project focused on four interrelated subprojects: physiological modeling, embedded systems development, and physical experimentation. The key objective of the physiological modeling group is to further develop Edward’s cardiovascular modeling tools making them more robust and easier to use. The key objective of the embedded systems development and the physical experimentation subgroup is to create a reliable and fully developed test bench which accurately simulates cardiovascular signals and expands Edward’s cardiovascular research capabilities. In conclusion of the Edwards TMP, the team developed a signal test bench which is expected to enhance Edwards research capabilities. This test bench utilizes Python™ tools for aortic pressure signal generation and modeling, and a physical test bench with protocols for performing frequency response experiments with Edwards products.