Apple Watch’s lifesaving powers could extend to preventing heart failure
Your Apple Watch may well be able to detect the Left Ventricular dysfunction of the heart, potentially helping to identify congestive heart failure sooner.
Congestive heart failure can lead to other heart issues. One fundamental problem is that patients with cardiac dysfunction often don’t report any symptoms, making diagnosing the problem more challenging. Now, a study suggests that a single-lead ECG like the Apple Watch could be enough to help with early diagnosis.
The study, first spotted by MyHealthyApple, involved more than 2,400 people across 46 U.S. states and 11 other countries. First, 125,610 ECGs were collected, with the data processed via an AI algorithm. Then some science happened.
“The AI algorithm detected patients with low EF(ejection fraction) with an area under the curve of 0.885 (95% confidence interval 0.823–0.946) and 0.881 (0.815–0.947), using the mean prediction within a 30-d window or the closest ECG relative to the echocardiogram that determined the EF, respectively,” MyHealthyApple reports.
While that won’t mean a lot to most of us, the critical part is pretty straightforward — the findings concluded that Apple Watches could identify patients with cardiac dysfunction even if they are asymptomatic.
The results of the study were published in Nature Medicine (opens in new tab) this week.
Apple Watches already help to save lives thanks to their heart rate and blood oxygen monitoring, not to mention fall and crash detection. Only this week, we reported on a teen who used his Apple Watch to call for help after falling 150ft, while reports of wearables alerting their owners of possible health conditions crop up with increasing regularity.
Apple recently released a new crop of Apple Watches. The Apple Watch Series 8, Apple Watch Ultra, and refreshed Apple Watch SE are all available to buy now and feature potentially lifesaving technology.
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