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IronRod Health Newsletter – May 2020

From the Heart


IronRod Health is now offering external heart monitoring services to monitor how a patient’s heart is behaving in real-life conditions, helping the physician to diagnose and treat patients with cardiac irregularities. There are several options to choose from, depending on the diverse needs of patients. We provide monitoring services for Wearable Event, Holter, and Mobile Cardiac Telemetry (MCT), all with one state of the art Trident Holter Monitoring Device.

Offering External Heart Monitors (also referred to as Wearable Cardiac Devices) is another step in our journey to complete patient care. Our well-rounded approach provides continuous support to physicians needing to track the heart activity of their patients while at home, at work, or going about their daily lives.


We have a stellar track record of supporting implantable devices – wearable devices was the next logical step! Whether the device is on the “inside” or the “outside”, our monitoring systems give an average of daily heart rates, responses to life, the effects of exercise, and how all these combined have affected the heart. Take a moment to read this month’s article about External Heart Monitors, and get to know MCT Clinical Manager Kim Mitchell in our Employee Success story below.


These times have been challenging for everyone. We are working closely with clinics and doctors’ offices amidst the uncertainty, offering extra support to patients, and letting them know they are not alone. We have built our business around quality patient care, and it’s a top priority now even more than ever before.


Due to the current pandemic, many people have been afraid to go to their doctor’s office, and we proudly offer solutions for these patients. We can monitor and keep in touch with those who prefer to stay at home, and even send devices directly to them. Removing the necessity of going into a clinic or office makes maintaining health while limiting COVID-19 exposure that much easier. 


Secretariat, the Racehorse with a Huge Heart 


Leaving competitors in the dust, many say Secretariat was the fastest and greatest thoroughbred in the history of horse racing. A stalwart in speed and agility, the champion rose to national fame when he, as a two-year-old colt, won 1972’s Horse of the Year. The next year he became the Triple Crown winner, setting track records and a world record along the way.

What made the world-famous stallion a champion? Besides a stellar bloodline and confirmation built for speed, Secretariat literally had a big heart – its estimated weight was a massive 22 pounds, due to a rare genetic mutation (the average horse heart weighs 8.5 pounds). Known as the X Factor, it comes about extremely rarely, when the mother (the broodmare) carries the recessive gene and produces offspring with a carrying stallion. Secretariat’s stamina was due to this tremendous cardiovascular system. Genetically, he was a racing machine.

The big heart gene in thoroughbreds can be traced back to a horse named Pocahontas, born in 1837. For the last 183 years, this gene has been the secret behind equine genetics and all the champion racehorses of today.

The 2020 Kentucky Derby was postponed to the first Saturday in September due to COVID-19, but there was still a Run for the Roses. It took place virtually through a computer simulation, pitting all 13 Triple Crown-winning horses against each other. Guess who the winner was? Naturally, the horse with the giant, most efficiently pumping heart – Secretariat!



Never Skip a Beat: The Value of External Heart Monitors



When you can monitor a patient in their day to day activities – working, exercising, even watching a football game – you get the most authentic picture of the patient’s needs. As cardiac monitoring technology has advanced, Mobile Cardiac Telemetry (MCT) has proven to be the most effective method for identifying and managing patients with asymptomatic arrhythmias, complete syncope, medication titration, post-CABG, and post-ablation. By utilizing Holter Monitoring, Event Monitoring, and the newer MCT Monitoring, a care team has the vital information to create a well-rounded approach to addressing the issue at hand.


We’ve all experienced “strange clanks” coming from our car, but at the mechanic, the sound is – “poof” – mysteriously gone and your car is purring like a kitten! Arrhythmias can be similar, often producing sudden symptoms that are typically no longer present by the time a person gets to a doctor. For this reason, many symptom-producing cardiac arrhythmias are difficult or impossible to diagnose with a standard electrocardiogram, making External Heart Monitoring an important diagnostic aid.


The devices and software used for External Heart Monitoring notice and capture rhythm changes, heart rate changes, and dangerous or deadly rhythms. Holter, Event, and MCT are invaluable tools in the physician’s grasp to take the best possible care of patients. Let’s take a look at the types of External Heart Monitoring systems:

  • A Holter Monitor records every heartbeat for the duration of the study, and the findings are analyzed after the patient returns the monitor. The traditionally used ambulatory cardiac monitor is a battery-operated portable device that continuously records heart activity (Electrocardiogram or ECG) for several days. A doctor might ask the patient to wear a Holter Monitor consistently for 24 to 48 hours (or longer) to screen for a cardiac event, such as atrial fibrillation or a suspected stroke.

  • An Event Monitor is worn for a longer time but gives quick glimpses into the patient’s activities, heart rhythms, arrhythmias, and symptoms. Tests such as electrocardiograms let the doctor look at a heart’s activity at rest and at one point in time. Abnormal heart rhythms and cardiac symptoms come and go at any given time, and the primary purpose of an event monitor is to record your heart rate and rhythm during a symptom or “event.” A doctor may recommend an Event Monitor when symptoms are infrequent or less than daily.

  • Mobile Cardiac Telemetry utilizes the patient’s symptoms to record and capture events, arrhythmias, and abnormalities felt by the patient. The continuous attention of ambulatory cardiac monitoring in near real-time is MCT, or basically putting the Holter Monitor and Event Monitor together. Through MCT, an ambulatory cardiac monitoring service can observe patients at their homes, while out doing daily functions, and even during sleeping. The mobile cardiac-monitored information is relayed to a site location where a patient’s ECG (electrocardiogram) can be reviewed.

IronRod Health’s team of dedicated technicians can take short glimpses and access full-time recorded data with a few clicks of a mouse. Physicians, physician’s assistants, and nurse practitioners then use this valuable and timely information to customize a patient’s care, including adjusting medications as needed, catching arrhythmias or adjusting daily physical activity.


Fast & Reliable Arrhythmia Detection: IronRod Health has a dedicated team of Certified Cardiac Technicians ready to provide 24/7 ECG analysis of Holter, Wearable Event, and Mobile Cardiac Telemetry studies along with industry-leading turnaround of end of service summary reports.



A Simple Recipe for Hand Sanitizer 


When it comes to preventing the spread of COVID-19, nothing beats 20 seconds of hand washing. The next best option is an alcohol-based hand sanitizer. Making your own is easy – all it takes is two ingredients (three if you would like to add fragrance). Let’s get started!


Alcohol-Based Hand Sanitizer:

  • 2 Parts 99% Isopropyl Alcohol (For this specific recipe, it MUST be 99% alcohol by volume)

  • 1 Part Aloe Vera Gel

  • Optional: A Drop or Two of Essential Oil, such as Tea Tree or Lavender

Measure out and stir or whisk all ingredients together until thoroughly combined (a large measuring cup with a pour spout works great for this). Fill your favorite dispenser and store the remainder in a glass container.

The key to making your own effective hand sanitizer is to make sure the alcohol content in the finished product is at or preferably slightly above 60 percent, the minimum needed to kill most germs (source: CDC). This recipe yields 66% alcohol by volume, which allows for the proper concentration to remain even after some natural evaporation.


Featured Employee: Kimberly Mitchell


Kimberly Mitchell, MCT/Holter/Event Manager, has a passion for being the patients’ advocate. Her background in Basic Life Support (BLS), Medical Devices, Cardiology, and Healthcare Management has been patient-focused and led her to a career in the education of healthcare professionals.


It was while she was teaching a course on how to perform and read 12 lead EKG’s that she crossed paths with members of the IronRod Health team. She was impressed with the forward-facing, patient-first ideals the team had and knew she wanted to become a part of the company. Kimberly now oversees the wearable cardiac devices division at IronRod Health, leading a team of dedicated technicians. She is ecstatic to be a member of an organization in which everyone genuinely cares about the patients, the clients, and each other.


IronRod Health has been a trusted partner to many physicians, providing monitoring and reassurance to thousands of patients. Our team stands ready to add patients to our remote monitoring program.

To learn more, call us at 888-743-3866 or email at info@ironrod.health