Apple Watch identifies uneven heart beat in large U.S. study

Apple Watch identifies uneven heart beat in large U.S. study: The Apple Watch was able to identify uneven heart beat rates that possibly will indicate the need for extra specialist care for a serious heart beat problem, as per the data from a large study sponsored by Apple Inc, representing a possible future role for wearable customer technology in healthcare.

Apple Watch detects irregular heart beat in large U.S. study

HIGHLIGHTS Apple Watch can detect and notify users when they experience irregular heart rhythms, finds a study demonstrating the ability of wearable technology to detect atrial fibrillation

Investigators anticipated that the technology can help in initial discovery of atrial fibrillation which is the most common form of uneven heartbeat. Patients with untreated AF are five times more expected to have a stroke.

Outcomes of the major AF screening and uncovering study, including over 400,000 Apple Watch operators who were requested to take part, were presented on Saturday at the American College of Cardiology conference in New Orleans.

Out of the 400,000 participants, 0.5%, or about 2,000 subjects, got the notifications of an uneven pulse. Those people were sent an ECG (electrocardiography) patch to wear for following recognition of atrial fibrillation occurrences.

As per the researchers, a third of those whose watches sensed an unbalanced pulse were confirmed to have atrial fibrillation by means of the ECG technology. The data showed that some 84% of the uneven pulse notifications were well ahead confirmed to have been AF episodes.

One of the study’s lead investigators, Dr. Marco Perez, from Stanford School of Medicine said, “The physician can use the information from the study, combine it with their assessment … and then guide clinical decisions around what to do with an alert”.

The study also discovers that 57% of partakers in the research who received an alert on their watch required medical consideration.

For Apple, the facts offer firepower as it drives into healthcare. Its latest Series 4 Watch, which turn out to be accessible only after the study initiated so was not used, has the capability to take an electrocardiogram to discover heart problems and required clearance from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

A cardiologist, Dr. Deepak Bhatt, from Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston who was not involved in the experimental, called it a significant study as usage of this type of wearable technology is only going to turn out to be more prevailing.

He said, “The study is an important first step in figuring out how can we use these technologies in a way that’s evidence based.”

Researchers advised caution by doctors in using facts from consumer devices when handling patients. But they also see great future possible for this kind of technology.

Lloyd Minor, dean of Stanford School of Medicine said, “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”.