How a Watch was used to Discover Heart Rate Variability (HRV) & How it’s Discovery has Led to Managing Wellness & Health.

Variability is the law of life… (Wiliam Osler, Physician and educator, 1849-1919 (Olser, 1903, p.327).
The Rev. Stephen Hales (1733) was credited to be the first individual to notice that pulse varied with respiration via a watch with a second hand that could be paused, also known as the ‘Physician’s Pulse Watch”.

The first recording of RSA (Respiratory Sinus Arrhythmia, was conducted by Carl Ludwig in 1847.

The year, 1895 brought advanced insight and awareness into Heart Rate Variability (HRV) with the introduction of ECG (electrocardiogram)...

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The Physician’s Secret Tool: Test that Streamlines Prevention and Intervention in Healthcare

Pressing the button to achieve excellent prevention and intervention.Prevention and intervention.

They’re the most important pursuits of physicians that keep patients healthy and free from harm.  When there’s a problem, they fix it.  When there’s no problem at all, they keep it that way.

Before doctors prevent and intervene, they must know what they’re trying to prevent and why they’re intervening.  They already have the skills to fix health problems.  All they need is a quick, efficient way of understanding what the potential or actual problem is.

In addition to using their own intelligence and healthcare experience, physicians can benefit from having a sidekick or special healthcare tool.

Let’s use superheroes and superhumans to drive the point home: Xavier and Cerebro (a brainwave amplifier used in X-Men); Thor and his hammer; and Gandalf and his sta...

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What are Those Wires that Hug the Heart?

Have you ever seen a movie, TV show, or commercial where a person is in a medical facility with wires attached to his chest? A fancy medical machine and doctor are usually nearby, accompanied by bleeps and bloops – sounds that mimic those of an EKG.

You’ve probably guessed before that these wires are helping doctors determine something.

But what?

Those wires and the machines you’ve wondered about are part of something called a heart rate variability (HRV) test. Today, the test is mostly used as a preventative medical measure that determines the consistency of someone’s heart rate during exercise. If the heart responds well to different physical variables, the person is said to have a decreased heart variability...

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ANS Tests Are Helping Medical Professionals Properly Diagnose Fibromyalgia

As much as 2 to 4 percent of the general population has fibromyalgia.

Fibromyalgia, a disease that affects the autonomic nervous system, has been treated unsuccessfully for many years.  Part of the reason for this is misdiagnosis.  People with fibromyalgia are often misdiagnosed with some other disease and, consequently, treated improperly.  What’s most unfortunate is that they’re labeled as hypochondriacs or hysterics because many lab tests often show no evidence of the disease.

Thanks to recent advancements in ANS testing, though, fibromyalgia is easier than ever to test for.

People with fibromylagia have an imbalance in ANS activity, which means the parasympathetic nervous system (in charge of resting states) is improperly balancing the activity of the sympathetic nervous system (in ...

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Astronauts Help Us Understand Our Nervous System’s Tolerance

If you don’t know what the autonomic nervous system is – commonly referred to simply as the nervous system – astronauts and pilots offer an interesting angle on the subject.

Instead of just saying the autonomic nervous system (ANS) affects everything – because it does – we’re going to let you experience its effects through the lives of some interesting people.  But first, let’s go over the two important parts of the nervous system: 1) the parasympathetic and 2) the sympathetic system.

The parasympathetic nervous system is responsible for resting and digestion while the sympathetic nervous system is responsible for reaction to physical activity.  Tightening blood vessels, increasing heart rate, speeding up breathing patterns – these are all sympathetic activities.

Because the AN...

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Cardiovascular Autonomic Neuropathy: a Serious Diabetic Complication Now Easier to Detect and Manage with Critical Care Assessment

In a recent post, we talked about the debilitating effects of diabetic autonomic neuropathy (DAN) and perhaps the most serious side-effect of it – cardiovascular autonomic neuropathy (CAN).  Using information in an article by the American Diabetes Association, we helped you understand what DAN is and how it’s treated.

Today, we’re going to talk about CAN – what it is and how it’s easier than ever for physicians to detect and monitor with our critical care test.

Before moving on, though, it’s important to understand that diabetic and cardiovascular neuropathy don’t exist on the same plane.  In other words, you often get one before you get the other and the process usually begins with diabetes.

The process looks like this: Diabetes –> Diabetic Neuropathy –> Cardiovascular Neuropathy


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Critical Care Assessment

Practice Revenue Sources: Critical Care Assessment®
by Audrey “Christie” McLaughlin, RN

Critical Care Assessment® is a “non-invasive, fully automated computer-based system that provides Heart Rate Variability (HRV), blood pressure analysis and Pulse Wave Velocity (PWV) analysis for a quantitative assessment of the Autonomic Nervous System (ANS) and Autonomic Balance (sympathetic and parasympathetic).”   This system has recently been upgraded to include the option to offer a separate Ankle-Brachial Index Test (ABI) which is a simple and reliable test for diagnosing Peripheral Artery Disease in its early stages before outward symptoms are present.

What does all that mean and what do those readings indicate?

In a nutshell, it means by utilizing this system in your practice, you wi...

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How to Make Biometric Testing Quick, Easy and Effective

Biometric testing is what many employers use to determine the health of their employees.  Although biometric testing isn’t mandatory, it’s been used for decades by many companies to create in-house wellness programs.

A common misconception is that employers only start this testing to make insurance companies happy.  However, the reality is that many companies care about the health of their employees.  They see biometric testing as a way to motivate employees to take better care of themselves – eat healthier, exercise and relax. Countless studies have shown that healthy people work better, feel better and are able to manage stress better.

For a while, biometric screening consisted of lengthy and even invasive practices...

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How an ANS Test Can Help Your Patients

Have you recently been informed by that your hospital or clinic should begin administering ANS tests? Are you aware of healthcare guidelines that will require a carepath for your patients? If so, it is very likely you have many questions or reservations regarding a new procedure that you are unfamiliar with. However don’t let simple confusion or misunderstanding inhibit you from doing what is best for the health of your patients. The ANS, or Autonomic Nervous System, test is designed to best evaluate your patient’s bodily functions and plays an important role in investigating those who suffer from various diseases. There are no invasive or potentially harmful procedures involved, and often times a single exam lasts less than a half hour and can be performed by an MA...

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More Ankle Brachial Index Testing Needed to Decrease Arterial Complications and Increase Awareness

Image of: Clinicians performing ankle brachial test on patient.According to a recent U.S. survey, 75% of adults have no idea what peripheral arterial disease (PAD) is.

Arterial blockage is a very serious matter; however, many people only associate arterial blockage to heart attacks and strokes in general.  They don’t know the about the symptoms of PAD and, consequently, consider leg pain a fleeting case of muscle or joint problems.  When people experience leg pain during exercise or cramping pains, they don’t place much significance on it when they really should.

It’s estimated that 8 to 12 million people in North America currently have PAD.  When 75% of adults don’t even know what it is, this is an alarming rate of people.  Everyone knows what a heart attack is, but not everyone knows what PAD is...

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