Does anyone use the Medtronic iPhone app (MyCare Link smart or heart)

  • by WIK
  • 2020-08-24 22:03:25
  • ICDs
  • 285 views
  • 6 comments

Is either of the two apps better than the other, or do they even work with an ICD?  Evidently they potentially could replace my bedside monitoring equipment, which would be beneficial for travel.  Are they reliable?   Thanks!

Bill

 


6 Comments

Hope this helps

by Gemita - 2020-08-25 04:25:04

Hello Bill,

We have had a few threads on this subject over the last few weeks and I kept some notes because I am also interested to know if an app might be helpful.  I attach the links so you can read at your leisure.

My suggestion is just try one of the apps and see if it works for you and your clinic.  Please speak to them in any event if you are having problems linking up or pop in to see them in case they need to programme you in or something like this !

I need to follow this up myself too.  I used to have a Reveal Linq implant loop recorder which used the MyCare Medtronic link phone to send nightly transmissions.  This implant has now been removed and I tried to return the phone and other hardware to my clinic recently.  They suggested I keep it and they would set it up to function with my pacemaker device.  I thought this was very clever!  A working app though would be even more helpful.  

https://www.pacemakerclub.com/message/37455/mobile-

https://www.pacemakerclub.com/message/37383/medtronic-smartphone-app

iPhone App

by WIK - 2020-08-25 14:05:02

Thanks again, Gemita.   Very helpful links.   I tried to enroll via the Medtronic website but evidently first need to acquire the "reader" from my provider, who hopefully will handle the insurance company.   Since insurance just paid for the bedside device, I am hopeful that they will still deem the portable reader/app medically justifiable.  I will speak to my cardiac physician in the near future to determine if I am indeed a candidate.   I would hope that the app would give me access to data, which I do not have now with the bedside device.  Fingers crossed!  

 

Bill

access to data

by Gemita - 2020-08-25 14:16:12

Bill, hello again.  I do not believe any of us can get immediate access to our pacemaker data whenever we want it for security reasons but of course we can request full access to pacemaker data at any time from our hospital.  In the UK I have requested this through Information Governance under the Data Protection Act 2018 or Access to Health Records Act 1990.  It takes a while to come through and they usually send it to me on a disk to read on my computer.  Paper copies would incur a charge.  Not sure how it is for you in the States ?

Medtronic My Heart/Smart Phone Apps

by Marybird - 2020-08-25 14:34:52

I don't have personal experience with these apps ( I'm a St. Jude gal muhself, LOL), but I've been reading about them as my sister uses the MyHeart Care link on her phone ( which I think is an Android) as a monitor with her Medtronic pacemaker. My daughter just had her Medtronic pacemaker generator replaced last week with an updated wireless version ( probably an Azure), and will be getting set up with a MyHeart Care link phone app when she goes back to see the nurse practitioner for her wound check this Friday.

As I read on the Medtronic site, both apps are used for transmission of patient pacing reports to the Medtronic site where these reports are monitored and stored, and the patients' doctors/clinics have access to these reports at any time. The doctors/clinics are also notified of any abnormalities/irregularities ( either with the pacemaker function or patient rhythm issues) when these occur.

And it looks as though both apps can be used with both pacemakers and CRTs. I didn't see any specific information about their use with ICDs, but figure that would be a question for the manufacturer/doctors who prescribe these apps for monitoring use.

The difference between the two is in how the pacing report is obtained from the pacemaker. The MyHeart Care link app is used with pacemakers that have wireless bluetooth-enabled technology, which enables the pacemaker to transmit the pacing information directly to the app on the phone, which then automatically transmits the information to Medtronics. According to the website ( and doctors, pacing reps), transmissions of the patient data is uploaded from the app to the website and reviewed every three months, the patient is notified in advance when these uploads/transmissions will occur ( date and time), and when the transmissions have been successfully completed.

The SmartPhone app, on the other hand, is used with pacemakers that don't have the blue-tooth enabled wireless technology ( as in older models, though it looks as though some newer pacemakers without this technology are still available). So this app comes with a reader, ( like the device placed over your pacemaker in the clinic to get a report), which is blue-tooth wireless enabled, and this reader transmits the report to the app on your phone. The patient with this app and reader would manually obtain readings to be sent to the website via the app at the schedule set up by the docs ( about every 3 months).

Whether one setup is better than the other is a matter of opinion, I guess, though the convenience of having the transmissions all done automatically without the patient having to do anything other than be near the phone/app at the time of transmission IMO would be preferable to having to remember to manually set up transmissions. Though a person whose pacemaker isn't blue-tooth wireless enabled couldn't use the MyHeartCare link app, and would be limited to the MySmartPhone app if they wanted to use apps as transmitters.

As for issues with the app, my daughter was informed by the Medtronic rep she saw at her last doctors' visit before her pacemaker replacement that he wasn't crazy about the app, as it tended to be turned off by the phone often to save on power and data transmission. And quite often the person wasn't aware that this had happened, so their app wasn't available when it was time for a transmission. I know this happened to my sister, who was blissfully unaware that her app had been turned off till she received a phone call from her EPs office instructing her to turn it back on. Now she makes sure it's on before she goes to bed, and checks regularly to make sure it's on during the day. Though I suppose the most important thing would be to ensure the app is turned on and ready to go before a scheduled transmission- and they do let you know when those will be happening.

She hasn't said anything about its using a lot of phone power, but I suppose the solution to this would be to keep the phone plugged in at night and plug it in whenever it looks low. I don't know about using lots of phone data, ( potentially driving up the monthly costs of using the phone, but individual plans vary).

I would figure these issues would be the same with either app.

And despite my daughter being told by the pacer rep that they didn't recommend the mobile app, and that she would most likely get a nightstand monitor/transmitter ( like my St Jude Merlin@home device), they told her later she would be getting the mobile phone app- that'd be the MYHeartCare link app. We'll see how that goes.

Good info,, thanks MaryBird

by WIK - 2020-08-25 15:12:17

Appreciate the comment and knowledge!

Bill

I actually use the app......

by ar_vin - 2020-08-25 15:30:29

I use the Medtronic MCL Heart app on an iPhone with my Medtronic Azure XT DR MRI PM.

It works great.

You should go to the following website first and register:

https://www.mycarelinkconnect.com/

And then install the app from the App store.

The "bedside" device was a non-starter for me.....I returned it.

 

 

 

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