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Physiological monitoring in firefighter ensembles: wearable plethysmographic sensor vest versus standard equipment.
Coca A; Roberge RJ; Williams WJ; Landsittel DP; Powell JB; Palmiero A
J Occup Environ Hyg 2010 Feb; 7(2):109-114
We evaluated the accuracy of a wearable sensor vest for real-time monitoring of physiological responses to treadmill exercise. Ten subjects in standard firefighter ensembles, treadmill exercising at 50% VO2 max, had heart rate (HR), respiratory rate (RR), skin temperature (Tsk), oxygen saturation (SaO2), tidal volume (VT), and minute ventilation (E) recorded concurrently by a wearable plethysmographic sensor vest and standard laboratory physiological monitoring equipment for comparison. A high degree of correlation was noted for most of the measured variables [HR (r = 0.99), RR (r = 0.98), Tsk (r = 0.98), E (r = 0.88), and SaO2 (r = 0.79)]. VT (r = 0.60) had a moderate correlation, although a paired differences analysis showed a mean paired difference of -0.03 L. This mean paired difference represents a 1.92% variation for VT. Data from the wearable sensor vest is comparable to data captured from standard laboratory physiological monitoring equipment on subjects wearing standard firefighter ensembles while exercising at a moderate work rate. This study demonstrates the accuracy of the wearable sensor technology for these physiological parameters under these conditions and suggests that it could be useful for actual field studies of firefighters in traditional firefighting gear.
Biomedical-engineering; Biological-monitoring; Fire-fighters; Laboratory-testing; Occupational-health; Physiological-measurements; Statistical-analysis; Surveillance-programs; Work-analysis; Work-environment; Work-performance; Author Keywords: firefighter ensembles; physiological monitoring; wearable; plethysmographic sensor vest
Aitor Coca, National Personal Protective Technology Laboratory, P.O. Box 18070, 626 Cochrans Mill Road, Pittsburgh, PA 15236
Issue of Publication
Journal of Occupational and Environmental Hygiene
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division