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Apple Watch also detects severe circulatory disorders in the heart
Electronic wristwatches, so-called smartwatches, can also be used for health and serve as digital diagnostic aids. With some models, for example, everyone can make an EKG. In addition, some of the small devices can recognize cardiac arrhythmias. And doctors are now reporting that a certain product can also detect cardiac circulatory disorders.
According to experts, smartwatches can be useful for people with heart problems, among other things. Some of the electronic wristwatches can be used to record electrocardiograms (ECGs) and identify irregular heartbeats. It has now been discovered that with the help of a specific smartwatch, cardiac circulatory disorders as well as cardiac circulatory disorders can be identified.
Discovery could help prevent heart attacks
Smartwatches have been available on the market for a long time, which among other things can correctly recognize cardiac arrhythmias such as atrial fibrillation.
This was also shown by a study published last year in the journal "JACC: Clinical Electrophysiology" by scientists from the German Center for Cardiovascular Research (DZHK) at the University Medical Center Greifswald and the University Hospital Basel.
And now a team of doctors from the Cardiopraxis Mainz and the Center for Cardiology of the University Medical Center Mainz reports to the journal "European Heart Journal" that with the help of a certain smartwatch, circulatory disorders of the heart can also be identified.
As it says in a statement, their discovery could help prevent heart attacks worldwide.
Smartwatch ECG recordings provided evidence of cardiac circulatory disorders
The case of an 80-year-old patient in Mainz shows that digitization can also do a lot in medicine and even save lives.
According to the information, the passionate Apple Watch wearer had come to the Chest Pain Unit of the University Medical Center Mainz and complained about chest pain, irregular pulse and the feeling of losing consciousness - all typical symptoms of coronary artery disease (CHD) and thus possible precursors a heart attack.
However, both an ECG recorded thereon and a subsequent blood test were normal. In ECG recordings, which the patient had previously made with her watch and showed the doctors, they found pronounced reductions in the so-called ST segment - and thus clear indications of a severe and acute cardiac circulatory disorder.
The patient was immediately examined with a cardiac catheter, which revealed a severe CAD that could easily have resulted in a heart attack.
According to the announcement, the almost closed coronary arteries of the woman were stretched with a balloon and supplied with stents. Two days later, she was discharged without symptoms.
Diagnostic assistants can save lives
“So far, the Apple Watch and its EKG APP have only been used to diagnose cardiac arrhythmias such as atrial fibrillation. In our opinion, this is the first case that has also shown cardiac circulatory disorders, ”said Univ.-Prof. Dr. Thomas Münzel from the Center for Cardiology at the University Medical Center Mainz.
“When you consider that millions of people wear a watch like this, our observation is sensational. It was also an advantage that the electronic wristwatch was easy for the sick elderly woman to use, ”explains the doctor.
"Many experts and patients worldwide should know that the Apple Watch ECG app can be used in addition to the diagnosis of cardiac circulatory disorders," says PD Dr. Christian Elsner, Commercial Director of the University Medical Center Mainz.
"The case shows that digitization in medical technology is unstoppable. Now it is a matter of making them as safe and efficient as possible for the future and the patients. When used appropriately, digital diagnostic aids can save lives, as in the case of the 80-year-old patient. ”(Ad)
Author and source information
This text corresponds to the requirements of the medical literature, medical guidelines and current studies and has been checked by medical doctors.
- University medicine of the Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz: The digital diagnostic helper: Smartwatch detects severe circulatory disorders in the heart, (accessed: May 3, 2020), University medicine of the Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz
- Michael Drexler, Christian Elsner, Valentin Gabelmann, Tommaso Gori, Thomas Münzel: Apple Watch detecting coronary ischaemia during chest pain episodes or an apple a day may keep myocardial infarction away; in: European Heart Journal, (published: April 29, 2020), European Heart Journal
- German Center for Cardiovascular Research: Detect atrial fibrillation in good time thanks to a smartwatch, (accessed: May 3, 2020), German Center for Cardiovascular Research
- Dörr M, Nohturfft V, Brasier N, Bosshard E, Djurdjevic A, Gross S, Raichle CJ, Rhinisperger M, Stöckli R, Eckstein J: The WATCH AF Trial: SmartWATCHes for Detection of Atrial Fibrillation; in: JACC: Clinical Electrophysiology, (published: online: November 28th, 2018 and in Volume 5, Issue 4, April 2019, Pages 525-526), JACC: Clinical Electrophysiology