BERKELEY, Calif. – Eko, creators of a heart and lung monitoring platform that combines non-invasive cardiac sensors with machine learning, is collaborating with Mayo Clinic to develop and commercialize technology that will help physicians detect patients with heart disease. The data-driven technology uses machine learning and a smart digital stethoscope to screen patients for the presence of a low ejection fraction (a weak heart pump). “With this collaboration we hope to transform the stethoscope in the pocket of every physician and nurse from a hand tool to a power tool,” said Dr. Paul Friedman, chairman of cardiovascular medicine at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., in a statement. “The community practitioner performing high school sports physicals and the surgeon about to operate may be able to seamlessly tap the knowledge of an experienced cardiologist to determine if a weak heart pump is present simply by putting a stethoscope on a person’s chest for a few seconds.” The technology leverages Mayo Clinic’s cardiovascular database and expertise in medical artificial intelligence and heart disease screening, and combines it with Eko’s cardiac monitoring platform. With the new algorithm, patients can be screened immediately by any health care provider. “By co-developing this technology, we can combine the knowledge of millions of ECGs and health care screenings to get an almost instantaneous snapshot of a patient’s heart,” said Connor Landgraf, CEO of Eko, in a statement. Eko plans to seek approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for the technology after running clinical studies with Mayo Clinic to demonstrate the safety and effectiveness of the algorithms for in-clinic screening.
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