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Apple’s new app alerts users when they have irregular heart rhythms

The Apple Heart Study application uses Apple Watch’s heart rate sensor to gather data on irregular heart rhythms and notify users who may be suffering from atrial fibrillation (AFib).

tech Updated: Dec 01, 2017 17:26 IST
Indo Asian News Service
Indo Asian News Service
Indo Asian News Service
Apple,Apple Heart Study,Apple Watch
Apple launches app to study and identify irregular heart rhythms.(Shutterstock)

Apple on Friday launched a new application that uses data from Apple Watch to detect and notify users when they experience irregular heart rhythms, like atrial fibrillation (AFib)– one of the leading causes of strokes.

The app, called “Apple Heart Study”, will be using Apple Watch’s heart rate sensor.

Apple said it is collaborating with Stanford University to improve the technology which is used to detect and analyse irregular heart rhythms.

“Working alongside the medical community, not only can we inform people of certain health conditions, we also hope to advance discoveries in heart science,” said Jeff Williams, Apple’s Chief Operating Officer.

The Apple Heart Study app is available in the US App Store to customers who are 22 years or older and have an Apple Watch Series 1 or later, Apple said in a statement on Thursday.

To calculate heart rate and rhythm, Apple Watch’s sensor uses green LED lights flashing hundreds of times per second and light-sensitive photodiodes to detect the amount of blood flowing through the wrist.

The sensor’s optical design gathers signals from four distinct points on the wrist, and when combined with powerful software algorithms, Apple Watch isolates heart rhythms from other noise.

The Apple Heart Study app uses this technology to identify an irregular heart rhythm.

As part of the study, if an irregular heart rhythm is identified, participants will receive a notification on their Apple Watch and iPhone, a free consultation with a study doctor and an electrocardiogram (ECG) patch for additional monitoring, Apple said.

“We’re excited to work with Apple on this breakthrough heart study,” said Lloyd Minor, Dean of Stanford University School of Medicine.

First Published: Dec 01, 2017 17:13 IST