Apple funded study finds Apple Watch can detect irregular heart rate

Apple funded study finds Apple Watch can detect irregular heart rate

Apple funded study finds Apple Watch can detect irregular heart rate

But if the watch detected another irregular heartbeat while someone was wearing the EKG patch, 84 percent of the time it really was a-fib, he said.

Participants that received notifications from the watch about an irregular heart beat were given an electrocardiogram device to wear.

This weekend, Stanford Medicine reported the results of the study at the American College of Cardiology's Annual Scientific Session and Expo in New Orleans.

The study was launched with sponsorship by Apple November 2017 to determine whether a mobile app that uses data from a heart-rate pulse sensor on the Apple Watch can identify atrial fibrillation.

"This study we believe provides very encouraging evidence that a device, the Apple Watch, can be used to detect a-fib and to point out to people when additional monitoring or testing may be needed", said Dr. Lloyd Minor, Stanford's dean of medicine. Since atrial fibrillation is an intermittent condition, it's not surprising for it to go undetected in subsequent ECG patch monitoring.

More than 419,000 Apple Watch users signed up for the unusual study, making it the largest ever to explore screening seemingly healthy people for atrial fibrillation, a condition that if untreated eventually can trigger strokes. Overall, about 57% sought medical attention. "Atrial fibrillation is just the beginning, as this study opens the door to further research into wearable technologies and how they might be used to prevent disease before it strikes - a key goal of precision health". While the series 4 model includes an ECG monitor along with the heart rate monitor that all Apple Watch models have, the company is working on a way for the Apple Watch to show a user's blood glucose reading without a needle stick. Returning to the study, about 33% of the 2,000 study participants who were flagged with an irregular pulse were told that they had AFib, according to the ECG patch that they were sent. The most recent Apple Watch, which features a built-in ECG, wasn't part of the study, as it was released after the study's launch.

The Stanford principal investigators were Mintu Turakhia, MD, associate professor of cardiovascular medicine, and Marco Perez, MD, associate professor of cardiovascular medicine, and the study chair was Kenneth Mahaffey, MD, professor of cardiovascular medicine. But they also see great future potential for this type of technology. "Further research will help people make more informed health decisions".

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