What Can We Do With These Patient Monitor Videos?

So we’ll admit from the start that we’re not entirely sure how the average Hackaday reader can put this content to use. Still, these simulated patient monitor videos on YouTube gotta be useful for something. Right?

Uploaded by [themonitorsolution], each fourteen-minute 1080p video depicts what a patient monitor would look like in various situations, ranging from an adult in stable condition to individuals suffering from ailments such as COPD and sepsis. There’s even one for a dead patient, which makes for rather morbid watching.

Now we assume these are intended for educational purposes — throw them up on a display and have trainees attempt to diagnose what’s wrong with the virtual patient. But we’re sure clever folks like yourselves could figure out alternate uses for these realistic graphics. They could make for an impressive Halloween prop, or maybe they are just what you need to get that low-budget medical drama off the ground, finally.

Honestly, it seemed too cool of a resource not to point out. Besides, it’s exceedingly rare that we get to post a YouTube video that we can be confident none of our readers have seen before…at the time of this writing, the channel only has a single subscriber. Though with our luck, that person will end up being one of you lot.

22 thoughts on “What Can We Do With These Patient Monitor Videos?

  1. One of the primary rules around patient care: Treat the Patient, Not the Monitor!
    When you see an aberrant rhythm, or alarms are triggered, GO LOOK AT YOU PATIENT! Are they brushing their teeth (ekg looks like ventricular fibrillation – potentially fatal). Monitors are useful tools, but they have very important limitiations on the information they can provide.

    1. @NurseBobIsRetired If we were writing tools to monitor the monitors, would the right outcome be to trigger an alert to a caregiver by sms/mqtt/lora/pager that the data appears to hint towards xxxx and it would be a good idea to GO LOOK AT YOUR PATIENT!

  2. I was in hospital for a couple weeks last year and other than the food (hospital food has gotten really good), the TV, and the occasional hot nurse, the highlight of the day was when they would take my vital signs a couple times a day.
    Mine were stellar, otherwise it could have been a downer; I loved seeing that low blood pressure, high pulse ox, etc.

    Wish I had one of those rigs for home use. A build article would not go amiss!

    1. Home automated blood pressure cuffs are readily available at big box pharmacies and fingers clip on pulse ox is typically $20 or so from a large online “bookseller” so you can do this already! It would actually be fun to zen-monk your body and see if you could materially affect your BP. I’ve always thought I’d be able to at least close my eyes and appear to meditate with minimal external clue as to what I was doing. But think reallllyyy hard about something that makes me really mad and see if I could get my BP to spike up.
      I’ve actually held my breath long enough to get the pulse ox in the mid 80’s it’s miserable and you feel like you are going to die.

      1. Try having covid, an O2 level of 70, but still being conscious (barely) and able to walk into an ER. I didn’t know I walked in with an O2 level of 70 until I was discharged 5 days later. Doctors and nurses have either been amazed I was still ambulatory or have said “I’ve seen that a lot with covid.”.

    2. I picked up a pulse-oximeter off Temu for a few $. It has a multi-color LED display that can invert its orientation for reading from 2 directions. It even has a pulsing bar graph. It’s nicer than the $40 one I got from a pharmacy with an all red LED display that can’t invert.

      The cheap one is as accurate as the expensive one. They’re either reading the same or within one digit on the readings every time.

  3. I’m sure these clips were made for soap opera/Hallmark/TV movie of the week usage. They need something to show on the props. Of course it always throws me off when there is a group of them off in a corner merrily showing non existent vitals 😆

    1. They almost universally use the wrong ones and display data that isn’t possible. Example- arterial blood pressure waveforms in orients that do no have an arterial catheter. Or CO2 tracing that requires (usually) a breathing tube or at least a face mask or nasal O2 monitor that the “patient” doesn’t have. Not saying I expect a lot from Hollywood but they could at least talk to a single RN for stuff like that.

  4. A nice thing would be a simulator of the raw data on the backend, and some simple frontend. The simple steady-state cases can be done via just periodically repeating a waveform.
    The sensors can then send timetagged data via mqtt, in blocks of couple samples to trade latency/overhead. Using mqtt-over-websockets, an arbitrary number of javascript frontends (and loggers, and data processors…) can be attached to a data source, with relatively minimal coding.
    And the data can be sent from a live patient or from a simulator. Or an entirely different kind of data, eg. a “health” of a turbogenerator or other machinery…
    Using mqtt as a convenient intermediate, the data can be acquired from el cheapo independent arduino (or tasmota or whatever…) based sensors. Timetagging of the data blocks will allow for delays inherent to domestic wifi. The display is only semirealtime anyway. Send say 5 times a second the block of samples from the sensor.
    AD8232 is a decent ECG amplifier chip. Analog output, to a suitable ADC.
    MAX30100 for oximeter. I2C interface.
    Breathing can be done with a resistive band and an ADC.
    Other sensor data (sleep studies use EMG for muscle activity, microphone/audio for snoring, cannula for nose airflow measurement, EEG if desired…) can be added.
    Data can be also processed by independent daemons, reading raw sensor data from a mqtt topic and sending cooked processed results to another.
    Likely not suitable for life-on-the-line scenario, but good for less demanding scenarios from props to simple at-home monitoring.

  5. If you’re in the US, you could put this on a raspberry pi, run this video on a used monitor, hook it up to somebody with your spare probes, throw in a bag of saltwater and you can charge people $15,000 freaking dollars

  6. Bringing it to the attention of the hackerspace, now we can see the different timings/refresh rate we’d need to properly sense and display the signals, possibly leading to a pi-monitor or esp32-based blood pressure cuff.

  7. How about wear a little monitor with this in plane view of those around you. Then secretly various transitions to see their reaction:
    -Maybe you are irritated or aroused, and your heart rate increases noticeably or with heart parenns on the screen.
    -Maybe you are board to death, and you just flat line and freeze until they notice.

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