Medicine

Massive study proves Apple Watch could save your life

Massive study proves Apple Watch could save your life

When an Apple Watch user in the study received a report of an irregular heartbeat, the notice asked the participant to schedule a telemedicine appointment with one of the doctors associated with the study.

The endpoint was the identification of atrial fibrillation, the heart condition that's the leading cause of stroke yet often remains undiagnosed as many people don't present symptoms.

Some other important findings from the study, which involved people in all 50 states, include the fact that only 0.5 percent of study participants were notified by the watch of an irregular pulse.

The newer ECG-enabled Apple Watch Series 4 was not included as it was released after the study had already begun.

A huge study suggests the Apple Watch can detect a worrisome irregular heartbeat at least sometimes - but experts say more work is needed to tell if using wearable technology to screen for heart problems really helps.

Minor added: "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".

Comparisons between irregular pulse-detection on Apple Watch and simultaneous electrocardiography (ECG) patch recordings showed the pulse detection algorithm (indicating a positive tachogram reading) has a 71 percent positive predictive value.

But Apple's next step, involving the Watch Series 4 and its ECG function, will be key, with pressure to strike the flawless balance between offering further heart information, and not scaring wearers into visiting the hospital for no reason.

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Participants downloaded an app, which intermittently checked their heart rate pulse sensor for irregularities.

This concern was shared at the time by Ethan Weiss, an associate professor at the Cardiovascular Research Institute at the University of California at San Francisco.

Apple Watch paves the way for wearable devices in health care as a new study showcases the watch's accuracy in detecting atrial fibrillations.

The study represents the impact that wearable technology could have in the future of healthcare.

In one of his studies, people discharged from the hospital after a heart attack or stroke were given either a wearable or a wearable plus a personalized activity goal and a financial incentive: $14 a week, with $2 deducted each day they didn't meet the goal of walking a certain number of steps. They advise users to consult their doctors before taking any further course of action. "Most of these people - young and tech savvy - will nearly certainly be at low risk for a stroke or other harmful outcome of a-fib". The sooner warning signs can be spotted, the sooner people can seek help.

A lead investigator on the study, Dr Marco Perez of Stanford University, stated: "The physician can use the information from the study, combine it with their assessment...."

The International Data Corporation (IDC), an independent agency, has estimated that Apple sold over 8 million watches in the last three months. The researchers concluded that the data of the study could be used as an additional tool by doctors who are diagnosing the patients.