Think the latest baby monitors are a good idea think again, experts say – ars technica openforum brain anoxia

For the average parent, this is probably true. You won’t need these devices.

HOWEVER. If you are a parent with a baby who is high risk for brady’s / sleep apnea (aka premature infants), these can be useful. Particularly since, as the paper states, there is no harm to the child. At a hospital these kids are monitored 24 / 7 with rapid nurse response if issues arise, which can be critical since they are already at risk for developmental delay’s.

The main complaint seems to be these devices aren’t FDA approved, and we don’t know if they really work as well as they advertise. The solution, then, is to perform a study to see how well they actually perform, not to denigrate those who use them.


These studies could take several years to happen.Brain anoxia if they actually cared; they would do the studies before they release the product. Heck once its called a medical device they can charge thru the roof for the device.

All they are currently doing is marketing their idiot device by working on the fears of new parents. These items and their manufacturers are no better than snake oil salesmen from days past.

For the average parent, this is probably true. You won’t need these devices.

HOWEVER. If you are a parent with a baby who is high risk for brady’s / sleep apnea (aka premature infants), these can be useful. Particularly since, as the paper states, there is no harm to the child. At a hospital these kids are monitored 24 / 7 with rapid nurse response if issues arise, which can be critical since they are already at risk for developmental delay’s.Brain anoxia

The main complaint seems to be these devices aren’t FDA approved, and we don’t know if they really work as well as they advertise. The solution, then, is to perform a study to see how well they actually perform, not to denigrate those who use them.

These studies could take several years to happen. If they actually cared they would do the studies before they release the product. Heck once its called a medical device they can charge thru the roof for the device.

All they are currently doing is marketing their idiot device by working on the fears of new parents. These items and their manufacturers are no better than snake oil salesmen from days past.

That’s too harsh of a characterization, I think.Brain anoxia snake oil and other patent medicine are stuff that doesn’t do anything, or are actually harmful, that is sold by malicious con men as a curative. These things probably don’t help that much, but I don’t think the people selling them are motivated by malice or malfeasance.

For the average parent, this is probably true. You won’t need these devices.

HOWEVER. If you are a parent with a baby who is high risk for brady’s / sleep apnea (aka premature infants), these can be useful. Particularly since, as the paper states, there is no harm to the child. At a hospital these kids are monitored 24 / 7 with rapid nurse response if issues arise, which can be critical since they are already at risk for developmental delay’s.Brain anoxia

The main complaint seems to be these devices aren’t FDA approved, and we don’t know if they really work as well as they advertise. The solution, then, is to perform a study to see how well they actually perform, not to denigrate those who use them.

That seems a bit of selective reading on your part: multiple times it is stated that they feel that there is harm, due to unnecessary hospital visits, etc.. And I don’t see any phrase here that denigrates the users. The main complaint is that the companies selling these items make wild, and misleadingly stated, claims, without a shred of evidence. The burden of proof is generally on the one making the claim.

I’m torn. These do seem to be oversold, but it seems like widespread deployment of monitoring devices will help to gather data, which may help us learn the causes of SIDS.Brain anoxia

See also cringely’s comments after the death of his son: https://web.Archive.Org/web/20060208150 … 20502.Html

What data? There is definitely a time and place for professional monitoring – in an actual research study with reliable devices, professional oversight, patient consent, etc. These devices are going to be highly tweaked to eliminate false positives, which means they will be deliberately inaccurate over time for pretty simple reasons (and pretty simple commercial reasons too).

Besides which, there’s no proof that the data being monitored is all that reliable for detecting SIDS prior to it actually happening. None. Zero. Nada.

Does it make the monitoring useless? If it detects a heartbeat or ox level below a certain threshold, and that was actually caused by something serious, then no, it’s not useless.Brain anoxia if you can reliably pair the two – specific to individual babies. Who is deciding that threshold though? Is it based on hard medical evidence? False positive rates? Is there any individual specific factors considered? Are THOSE based on medical evidence?

Now we’re into the realm of why the FDA needs to be involved…And why subtle hints at SIDS prevention should be shot down immediately as simple naked obviously-biased false advertising playing on parent fears.

I’m torn. These do seem to be oversold, but it seems like widespread deployment of monitoring devices will help to gather data, which may help us learn the causes of SIDS.

See also cringely’s comments after the death of his son: https://web.Archive.Org/web/20060208150 … 20502.Html

brain anoxia

What data? There is definitely a time and place for professional monitoring – in an actual research study with reliable devices, professional oversight, patient consent, etc. These devices are going to be highly tweaked to eliminate false positives, which means they will be deliberately inaccurate over time for pretty simple reasons (and pretty simple commercial reasons too).

Besides which, there’s no proof that the data being monitored is all that reliable for detecting SIDS prior to it actually happening. None. Zero. Nada.

Does it make the monitoring useless? If it detects a heartbeat or ox level below a certain threshold, and that was actually caused by something serious, then no, it’s not useless.Brain anoxia if you can reliably pair the two – specific to individual babies. Who is deciding that threshold though? Is it based on hard medical evidence? False positive rates? Is there any individual specific factors considered? Are THOSE based on medical evidence?

Now we’re into the realm of why the FDA needs to be involved…And why subtle hints at SIDS prevention should be shot down immediately as simple naked obviously-biased false advertising playing on parent fears.

I mean….Whatever the cause of SIDS is, detecting that there isn’t any oxygenation, or that there isn’t a pulse is guaranteed to let you know if something is happening, which is better than the current set up of waking up too late. That’s the point right, to catch something cataclysmic, not everyday maladies.Brain anoxia these devices are designed for the baby has no pulse and the baby is not getting oxygen moments. Pick cataclysmic levels of alert and problem solved. 100 BPM (typical BPM is 130-170 for babies), 75% SPO2 (88-100 is typical).

I have first-hand experience with a pulse-ox monitor on our born-at-34-weeks baby who stayed in the NICU for 12 days. The hospital grade monitors would show below 80% oxygenation regularly. (above 90% was an acceptable reading). These usually happened when our baby shifted positions, or during diaper changes, and sometimes just randomly. In a 24 hour period, it would alarm roughly 2-3 times on average. The nurses would then come in and readjust, then it would pick up the correct reading again.Brain anoxia I can’t imagine many end-users that would be happy with that many false-positives.

I completely agree. Our oldest needed┬ásurgery when he was born, so he was in the NICU for 10 days. That thing went off all the time, and we learned┬ánot to worry about it, and the nurses (trained medical professionals) were quickly able to recognize the false positives. The reason it alarms so easily is because they’re designed to be used on a child that needs the monitoring, so it’s best to err on the side of caution.

If you use one that tweaks the thresholds to avoid so many false alarms, then it seems like it could miss real events as well. This won’t be a problem for most cases, since most infants don’t actually need the monitoring.Brain anoxia but can you imagine buying one, and being the case where your newborn has a real problem and it gets filtered out because the device manufacturer didn’t want to worry you about what was probably a false positive?

I’m torn. These do seem to be oversold, but it seems like widespread deployment of monitoring devices will help to gather data, which may help us learn the causes of SIDS.

See also cringely’s comments after the death of his son: https://web.Archive.Org/web/20060208150 … 20502.Html

What data? There is definitely a time and place for professional monitoring – in an actual research study with reliable devices, professional oversight, patient consent, etc. These devices are going to be highly tweaked to eliminate false positives, which means they will be deliberately inaccurate over time for pretty simple reasons (and pretty simple commercial reasons too).Brain anoxia

Besides which, there’s no proof that the data being monitored is all that reliable for detecting SIDS prior to it actually happening. None. Zero. Nada.

Does it make the monitoring useless? If it detects a heartbeat or ox level below a certain threshold, and that was actually caused by something serious, then no, it’s not useless. If you can reliably pair the two – specific to individual babies. Who is deciding that threshold though? Is it based on hard medical evidence? False positive rates? Is there any individual specific factors considered? Are THOSE based on medical evidence?

Now we’re into the realm of why the FDA needs to be involved…And why subtle hints at SIDS prevention should be shot down immediately as simple naked obviously-biased false advertising playing on parent fears.Brain anoxia

I mean….Whatever the cause of SIDS is, detecting that there isn’t any oxygenation, or that there isn’t a pulse is guaranteed to let you know if something is happening, which is better than the current set up of waking up too late. That’s the point right, to catch something cataclysmic, not everyday maladies. These devices are designed for the baby has no pulse and the baby is not getting oxygen moments. Pick cataclysmic levels of alert and problem solved. 100 BPM (typical BPM is 130-170 for babies), 75% SPO2 (88-100 is typical).

Two obvious problems with that:

1) time it takes between the cataclysm and the arrival of a medical professional; and

2) whether you or the nearest medical professional (who we’ll assume has arrived in minutes) have proficiency in infant cardiopulmonary resuscitation.Brain anoxia

In other words, unless a parent is actually trained in resuscitating infants, what good has the cataclysmic alarm served? Answer: it served no good whatsoever. I’m assuming we’re ignoring owlet care’s bottom line in this analysis.

This is why actual medical people will patiently try to explain the false sense of security that these companies are selling. They exist for the peace of mind of the parents. That’s what you are buying. You would definitely not be buying anything that actively prevents SIDS. Not until they go get some sort of FDA approval to give that statement directly in their marketing, after providing evidence of some (any) kind of realistic benefit.

I have first-hand experience with a pulse-ox monitor on our born-at-34-weeks baby who stayed in the NICU for 12 days.Brain anoxia the hospital grade monitors would show below 80% oxygenation regularly. (above 90% was an acceptable reading). These usually happened when our baby shifted positions, or during diaper changes, and sometimes just randomly. In a 24 hour period, it would alarm roughly 2-3 times on average. The nurses would then come in and readjust, then it would pick up the correct reading again. I can’t imagine many end-users that would be happy with that many false-positives.

Same. Our kid had apnea (also a 34 weeker, but after she came home), and a long return trip to the hospital to figure it out. In the beginning i’d freak out at anything below 98. Then it’s like well, she can hit 60 but as long as it’s a quick rebound.Brain anoxia the nurses are always up, always rotating. It’s easy enough for them to see the issue and reset the monitor or whatever. You on the other hand don’t have three shifts of people in and out of the room, you’re a parent, a worker, a parent of others possibly.

At home, you’d be up so much you’d turn the threshold down. You can’t be a good parent with literally one hour of sleep a night. So, you’d turn down the threshold and you’d be where you were before but now with a false sense of security.

My wife and I have an owlet. We haven’t had any issues with false alarms besides the first time when we had the sock on the wrong foot, and the times when the baby shook the sock off (although the owlet differentiates that from a heart beat/ox level alarm).Brain anoxia I think a factor this analysis ignores is the health of the mother. They need to sleep….And if they’re worrying they can’t sleep. Since we haven’t had an issue with false alarms, and we don’t engage in risky practices due to a false sense of security, I don’t see the harm (other than to my wallet). If it were my choice alone I wouldn’t have gotten it…But there were other considerations.

I had this situation as well. We got it for peace of mind and we didn’t engage in any risky practices. The difference is that we did have a few false alarms. And when they happened, I woke up and my kid was ok. And then I went back to bed.

So yeah, I think overall, the peace of mind that came with knowing the kid was still moving was nice, and the harm of false positives was negligible.Brain anoxia

My wife and I have an owlet. We haven’t had any issues with false alarms besides the first time when we had the sock on the wrong foot, and the times when the baby shook the sock off (although the owlet differentiates that from a heart beat/ox level alarm). I think a factor this analysis ignores is the health of the mother. They need to sleep….And if they’re worrying they can’t sleep. Since we haven’t had an issue with false alarms, and we don’t engage in risky practices due to a false sense of security, I don’t see the harm (other than to my wallet). If it were my choice alone I wouldn’t have gotten it…But there were other considerations.

First, I’m taking the use of a lower-case ‘o’ as permission to imagine that you are using a trained baby owl to detect your child’s heart beat (thanks to their excellent hearing) and sound the alarm.Brain anoxia it is a beautiful world.

Second, the point about parental anxiety is important, but also a tricky minefield and not a clear win for the device. I know firsthand that more information can just cause more anxiety. A parent worried enough about SIDS to be unable to sleep could also find themselves constantly checking the monitor’s reading in case there’s still a problem but the monitor’s threshold is too low for it to alarm, and every temporary drop in the number becomes a mini-heart-attack as they wait for it to go back up. Maybe it’s normal, maybe this time it’s about to lead to catastrophe. Oh, this time it went down for longer, is that normal? Better not try to fall asleep; better be awake when the owl goes off (yes I’m still picturing an owlet).Brain anoxia

Then you throw in the possibility of false alarms (look, training an owl is hard okay?) shocking this anxiety-prone person awake in the middle of the night, sending them panicking into the nursery, and that’s a recipe for sleepless nights not to mention hypertension.

I guess my point is, while it may have worked out for you, anyone who is thinking yeah, it may not do what it says but at least it’ll curb my (partner’s) anxiety should think very carefully about it first.