Atrial Fibrillation (Afib) is an arrhythmia caused by a problem with the hearts electric system. An arrhythmia occurs when either the speed or the rhythm of a heartbeat is not normal. Although there are 3 types of arrhythmia, atrial fibrillation is the most common.
Currently, determining if someone is in atrial fibrillation is primarily done by use of an electrocardiogram (ECG). An ECG uses sensors attached to your upper torso to record the heart’s electrical signals. Although there are other devices that can track these signals such as event and holter monitors, they are typically used by patients at home to assist physicians in diagnosing paroxysmal atrial fibrillation.
A new study is looking at smartwatches to see if they could be a viable option to alert the wearer of an Afib event. The lead author of the study, Dr. Gregory Marcus, stated, “Our overall hope is to leverage the growing use of smartwatches to help detect atrial fibrillation without any extra effort on the part of the user.” This could lead to earlier detection so people could receive earlier treatment for a condition that doesn’t always have obvious signs and symptoms.
Read more about the study: https://consumer.healthday.com/cardiovascular-health-information-20/atrial-fibrillation-959