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12th August 2021

Research Update: Bradley Pitman

THRF 2019 PhD Grant Recipients

PhD student Bradley Pitman is focusing on improving outcomes and follow-up care of patients with pacemakers and other heart rhythm devices, supported by Australian Heart Research.

Bradley’s research involves a couple of different areas of improving care, including analysing the care patients with pacemakers receive when they present to the emergency department and also assessing the performance of a new type of pacemaker technology called ‘His bundle’ pacing.

However, his research was impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, which limited his ability to interact with patients for prospective recruitment studies, so he redirected his focus to projects he was able to actively continue.

Bradley has managed to progress his goal of improving care and outcomes of patients with cardiac implantable electronic devices by investigating additional areas of service delivery and new technology developments.

“My research aim is still to improve service delivery and I’m continuing this work by assessing patients with pacemakers receiving MRI scans at the Royal Adelaide Hospital,” Bradley said.

“My research has shown a significantly growing clinical workload burden associated with this task, due to increased MRI scans being performed for this patient group as well as more patients having MRI scan suitable devices.”

An abstract from this research has been submitted and accepted for presentation at the 2021 Cardiac Society Australia & New Zealand (CSANZ) scientific conference in August.

“My assessment of ‘His bundle’ pacing is an example of research aiming to assess new technology, made possible thanks to the support from the AHR donor community,” Bradley said.

“I have now additionally investigated another cardiac implant technology which is a new heart rhythm monitor being used for our patients. This is the Insertable Cardiac Monitor (ICM) with prolonged sensing vector. This device is implanted under the skin of the patient and can capture abnormal heart rhythm episodes.

“My research showed that the ICM with prolonged sensing vector had a significantly larger signal obtained from the top heart chamber. As this is the heart chamber where AF occurs, having the ability to obtain a larger signal allows better visualisation for clinicians of what exact rhythm abnormality is captured by the implanted device recordings.”

Bradley’s research can lead to better patient outcomes for men and women who suffer heart complications.

“Many thanks to AHR and The Hospital Research Foundation Group and their donors for supporting and allowing me to conduct this research.”

We look forward to updating you on Bradley’s progress!