What if a wearable could save your life? It sounds completely crazy but yet this situation can now happen. The wearable market is becoming more and more medicalized, offering you new services and new features to protect your health. Latest novelty, some watches are now capable of recording electrocardiograms.
Until now, the heart monitoring of smartwatches, fitness trackers and other connected products has been limited to cardio-optical sensors. The problem is, while this feature can give you an indication of your heart activity, it relies too heavily on the activity you are performing and does not detect heart problems.
This is why brands are now evolving their devices to better take care of heart rhythm disorders. As with other medical problems, screening is essential. Hence the development of wearables with an EKG functionality. Self-measurement then allows precise results to be obtained without the ‘white coat’ effect that some people may experience and thus prevent possible accidents or heart problems.
A medical ECG on your wrist
So why such a craze? Quite simply because it is a public health issue. Today, in Europe and the United States, it is estimated that one in four adults will suffer from atrial fibrillation in their lifetime, that is, from an irregular heartbeat. This abnormality in the electrical activity of the heart is responsible for about 1/3 of strokes. However, 90% of these accidents could be avoided with early detection.
Now, from your wrist, thanks to new wearables, it is now possible for anyone to easily detect atrial fibrillation, especially in the event of symptoms such as palpitations. Atrial fibrillation is an arrhythmia that presents as irregular episodes that may not occur during a consultation with a healthcare professional. It is then likely not to detect this disease from the first visits. Wearing a watch that allows an ECG recording allows you to capture your AF episodes at any time.
New types of wearables, such as the Withings Move ECG, widen the diagnostic window and offer a non-invasive tool for detecting cardiac arrhythmias. The detailed results are visible in the applications of the different brands and it is even possible to share them with your doctor for better monitoring. An early diagnosis of this type of arrhythmia can make a real difference in the effectiveness of the proposed treatment.
In the Withings Health Mate app (available on Android and iOS), you can view your ECGs and share them with your doctor.
ECG finally affordable for everyone
Apple with its ECG watch has shown the importance of this type of measurement for the general public. Now, other manufacturers have entered the market and now offer even more precise products, and above all much more affordable. Withings (formerly Nokia), the French firm specializing in connected objects, in particular launched this fall the very first analog watch capable of recording an electrocardiogram.
The Move ECG (that’s its name) finally democratizes the realization of an ECG certified medical CE, traditional medical devices often proving quite complicated it is true. This eliminates the need to spend several hundred euros, or even to follow a complicated procedure to record an ECG. In addition to benefiting from an analog watch design and a one-year battery life, you can easily perform an ECG anytime and in seconds.
At 129 euros, the Withings Move ECG is the best wearable for performing an ECG.
Year after year, wearables are thus enriched with more complex functions which always aim to preserve our health. In the future, some objects could even go further. A prototype currently being tested would, for example, make it possible to fight overdoses and alert the emergency services in the event of danger.
Are you interested in watches with ECG?Discover more at Withings Home Page
With the increasingly growing boom in smart health connected objects dedicated to health, Apple has decided to pull out, too, by giving its Apple Watches a medical dimension. Indeed, they may soon have a function that would allow them to recognize emergency situations and contact the emergency services for you.
It was since a rather unusual event that this idea germinated at Apple. A teenager was diagnosed with a life-threatening illness, thanks to the features of an Apple Watch. With this improvised but very positive publicity, Apple decided to go further. It would therefore seem that the next models of the brand’s smart health connected watches will be equipped with a heart monitoring and an electrocardiogram.
Apple Watch will call for help for you
After this event, Apple took over the concept to develop an application that will be entirely dedicated to medical assistance. It should also be noted that they have already filed a patent for their new functionality: “Care event detection and alert”Which means in French“Detection and alert of care events“. This brand new feature will allow the watch to alert doctors, firefighters or even family members and inform its users of the medical emergencies available around it.
monitoring the health of the wearer Apple Watch, will be done thanks to the heart monitoring and the EKG implanted in the watch. But in order to avoid false alarms that could annoy doctors and firefighters, Apple has planned a parade. A series of notifications and alerts will sound increasingly, and if the user still does not respond, it makes an emergency call as a last resort. In this way, your Apple Watch will not call the fire department as soon as you have a beating heart.
What about legislation?
So if the Apple Watches will gradually enter the world of medical wearables, it should be noted that they have not yet had authorization from the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) to be considered as medical equipment, nevertheless presents functionalities which cannot fall into the category of gadgets… It could be that these all new functionalities seduce individuals and become a selling point in gold for their next model… A So see if the next Apple Watch keeps its promises and takes care of us.