- A wearable wristwatch technology tracks the hearts electrical activity and notifies patients with atrial fibrillation of their heart rate status.
- Placing a finger on the wristwatch tells the user if the heart rate is normal or indicative of atrial fibrillation.
- This technology may help screen patients prior to scheduling electrical cardio-version procedures and avoid scheduling ones that are unnecessary.
A novel wristband technology and a
corresponding smartwatch app displays the heart's electrical activity and
notifies patients with atrial fibrillation of their heart rhythm, according to
data presented at the American College of Cardiology's 67th Annual Scientific
Session. The wearable technology tells the user if the heart rate is normal or
indicative of atrial fibrillation. It helps patients know if they are having an
acute episode which can drastically improve treatment and outcomes.
Atrial fibrillation and its managementAtrial fibrillation (AFib) is a type of heart rhythm disorder where the heart beats irregularly and often rapidly. During atrial fibrillation, the heart's upper chambers beat chaotically and out of coordination with the lower chambers of the heart. This condition increases a patient's risk for heart failure stroke and other heart-related complications. It affects about 9 percent of people over the age of 65 in the U.S alone.
Patients with AFib either choose to opt for a pacemaker or an implanted defibrillator to normalize the heart rhythm. However, these methods can be expensive and are invasive. Most patients choose for a scheduled electrical cardio-version, a procedure which applies an electric shock to the heart to restore normal rhythm. The procedure is often done under some type of sedation or anesthesia.
Why it is better than a heart rate monitor
- Records even a single lead electrocardiographic (ECG) tracing, allowing the user to visualize the heart's electrical activity, including the rate and regularity of heartbeats.
- At any time, the patient can place a finger on a spot on the wristband and the smartwatch algorithm will instantaneously tell the reader about the heart rhythm; if it's normal, indicative of AFib or undetermined. In case of undetermined readings, coupling it with physician's review could reliably differentiate between AFib and normal heart rhythm.
- It is cost effective when compared to pacemakers and implantable defibrillators.
Study overview"Our patients are exposed to a growing number of health care devices that are available for purchase without a prescription. What we don't know is if these devices provide meaningful clinical information that patients and their physicians can interpret and use effectively," said Joseph Bumgarner, MD, an electrophysiology fellow at Cleveland Clinic and the lead author of the study. "Our study is the first to assess how accurately a wearable smartwatch device can identify AFib or normal sinus rhythm compared to a standard 12-lead ECG as is often done in the clinic."
Each participant was given a smartwatch equipped with the wristband technology and coached on how to use it. The participants also underwent a standard ECG. The team then compared the automated smartwatch interpretations with the physician-reviewed standard ECG and cardiologists determined how accurate the wristwatch readings were.
- When the algorithm was able to provide a diagnosis (normal heart rate or AFib), it detected AFib with 93 percent sensitivity and 84 percent specificity.
- 34.9% of the readings from the watch were classified as an undetermined. When these non-interpretable readings were coupled with a physician's review, AFib was correctly diagnosed with 100 percent sensitivity and 80 percent specificity.
- ECG on smartwatch accurately detects AFib - (https://scienmag.com/ecg-on-smartwatch-accurately-detects-afib/)
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Anjali Aryamvally. (2018, March 01). Novel Smartwatch Technology to Help Track Heart Rate. Medindia. Retrieved on Aug 07, 2022 from https://www.medindia.net/news/healthinfocus/novel-smartwatch-technology-to-help-track-heart-rate-177476-1.htm.
Anjali Aryamvally. "Novel Smartwatch Technology to Help Track Heart Rate". Medindia. Aug 07, 2022. <https://www.medindia.net/news/healthinfocus/novel-smartwatch-technology-to-help-track-heart-rate-177476-1.htm>.
Anjali Aryamvally. "Novel Smartwatch Technology to Help Track Heart Rate". Medindia. https://www.medindia.net/news/healthinfocus/novel-smartwatch-technology-to-help-track-heart-rate-177476-1.htm. (accessed Aug 07, 2022).
Anjali Aryamvally. 2021. Novel Smartwatch Technology to Help Track Heart Rate. Medindia, viewed Aug 07, 2022, https://www.medindia.net/news/healthinfocus/novel-smartwatch-technology-to-help-track-heart-rate-177476-1.htm.