Vascular stiffness is an indicator of cardiovascular health, with carotid artery stiffness having established correlation to coronary heart disease and utility in cardiovascular diagnosis and screening. State of art equipment for stiffness evaluation are expensive, require expertise to operate and not amenable for field deployment. In this context, we developed ARTSENS®, a device for image free, non-invasive, automated evaluation of vascular stiffness amenable for field use. ARTSENS has a frugal hardware design, utilizing a single ultrasound transducer to interrogate the carotid artery, integrated with robust algorithms that extract arterial dimensions and compute clinically accepted measures of arterial stiffness. The ability of ARTSENS to measure vascular stiffness in-vivo was validated by performing measurements on 125 subjects. The accuracy of results was verified with state-of-the-art ultrasound imaging based echo-tracking system. The relation between arterial stiffness measurements performed in sitting posture for ARTSENS measurement and sitting/supine postures for imaging system was also investigated to examine feasibility of performing ARTSENS measurements in the sitting posture for field deployment. The study verified the feasibility of the novel ARTSENS device in performing accurate in-vivo measurements of arterial stiffness. As a portable device that performs automated measurement of carotid artery stiffness with minimal operator input, ARTSENS has strong potential for use in large scale screening.
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