Apple Watch ECG Feature Can Find Heart Problems That Hospital ECG Can Miss

The Apple Watch has spent the last five years not only giving people access to apps and information on their wrists, but actually saving lives at an amazing rate of pace.

Reports of an Apple Watch saving a life pop up monthly, with the latest example causing the European Heart Journal to suggest it can be used to detect myocardial ischemia.

The report comes after an 80-year-old German woman went to a local hospital complaining of chest pains and feeling lightheaded. The hospital performed a traditional ECG but found no issues. That’s where things would have ended if the woman hadn’t been wearing an Apple Watch.

The watch’s own ECG report showed “tracings with marked ST-segment depression” which was enough to send the patient for further tests. After further diagnoses, the patient underwent surgery to have stents fitted. And the whole thing certainly seems to have impressed the European Heart Journal.

The development of smart technologies paves the way for new diagnostic possibilities. In the case of the Apple Watch, after the mobile application is installed, the records an ECG when a finger is placed on the watch’s digital crown. A 30-s tracing is stored in a PDF file that can be retrieved from the application.

Thus, the Apple Watch may be used not only to detect atrial fibrillation or atrioventricular-conduction disturbances but also to detect myocardial ischemia. An apple a day may keep myocardial infarction away.

The ECG feature is available on Apple Watch Series 4 and Series 5 models and will presumably be available in all newer models, too. Between the ECG app and the constant heart rate monitoring the Apple Watch is a great way to keep tabs on heart health.

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