The Apple Watch is now the world's leading wearable device alongside Fitbit and it would seem that both can be used to detect hypertension and sleep apnea. It's only the latest example in a string of recent studies in which researchers have tapped into the biosensors of wearables to turn them into devices that can detect and monitor serious health conditions. Then people were sent for further examination, confirmed him to have more of a predisposition to hypertension and impaired ventilation during sleep.
As for the Cardiogram study, Ballinger said the results will soon go into the peer review process to validate whether wearables can be used as screeners for major health care conditions. Cardiogram is a company that has an app that breaks down the heart rate data that is collected by the Apple Watch. Researchers trained a machine learning algorithm called DeepHeart on data from 70 per cent of participants, both those with sleep apnea and hypertension and those without. About 90 per cent of the time it was able to accurately detect those with sleep apnea; 82 per cent of the time it accurately detected hypertension. As for now, it is very hard for some of the patients to visit doctors and wait for their turn to get their blood tested.
Sleep apnea affects an estimated 22 million adults in the US, with another 80 percent of cases of moderate and severe obstructive sleep apnea undiagnosed, according to the American Sleep Apnea Association.
Sleep apnea, according to the National Institute of Health, is a common disorder in which you have pauses in breathing or shallow breathing during sleep.
The crucial difference an Apple Watch or other heart rate-monitoring wearable has over visiting a doctor is its ability to constantly monitor and record data. Hypertension, meanwhile, is high blood pressure; for extended periods, it can lead to serious health issues. The study found that out of the 6,115 people who participated, sleep apnea was detected in 1,016 of those people had high blood pressure in 2,230 of them.
Earlier this year, another study conducted by UCSF and Cardiogram successfully detected abnormal heart rhythm (arrhythmia) in Apple Watch wearers.