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Wearable Temperature Sensor May Aid in Detecting Febrile Adverse Events in Patients With Cancer


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A simple, wearable temperature sensor was able to detect dangerous complications in hospitalized patients with cancer hours earlier than routine monitoring. The device, which takes readings every 2 minutes and wirelessly transmits them to the cloud, was able to quickly detect adverse events that affect body temperature, like infection and cytokine-release syndrome, allowing for swifter interventions, according to findings published as a research letter by Flora et al in Cancer Cell.

Improvement in Symptom Monitoring

The study examined data from 62 patients at the University of Michigan Rogel Cancer Center who were undergoing treatment that included a hematopoietic stem cell transplant or chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapy using a wearable sensor already approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for home use.

The researchers were able to detect potentially dangerous fevers about 5 hours earlier than standard temperature checks, which typically happen every 4 to 8 hours in the hospital.

Along with frequent monitoring of fluctuations in each patient’s temperature, the study also examined more subtle changes in temperature that may appear as deviations from the patient’s baseline circadian pattern, signaling a potential problem before a steep temperature rise.

“This lead time is clinically significant for patients with cancer, who are commonly immunocompromised and at risk for infection,” said study co–senior author Muneesh Tewari, PhD, Professor of Internal Medicine and Biomedical Engineering at the University of Michigan. “How quickly doctors can administer antibiotics can play an important role in combating potentially fatal infections and sepsis.”

The monitoring approach could also facilitate moving some costly inpatient CAR T-cell therapy care to the outpatient setting, by providing additional lead time for the patient to return if a problem was detected, noted the study’s other senior author Sung Won Choi, MD, Associate Professor of Pediatric Hematology and Oncology.

Disclosure: For full disclosures of the study authors, visit cell.com.

The content in this post has not been reviewed by the American Society of Clinical Oncology, Inc. (ASCO®) and does not necessarily reflect the ideas and opinions of ASCO®.
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