Apple announced the availability of the ECG application today on the fourth generation watch and the latest models in the United Arab Emirates with iOS 14 and watchOS 7. This is the first feature of the company that allows customers to take an electrocardiogram directly from their wrist. The rhythm disturbance notification feature has also been launched in the third generation and later models that allow monitoring the heart rhythm in the background from time to time, and send notifications if an irregular heartbeat indicating atrial fibrillation is identified.
This comes after the application of the electrocardiogram and the rhythm disturbance notification feature obtained the approval of the Ministry of Health and Community Protection to launch them in the UAE as medical devices.
“The Apple Watch has helped so many people around the world, and we are honored that it has become an important part of our customers’ lives, ”said Jeff Williams, Apple’s General Manager of Operations. With the release of these heart features, the Apple Watch takes an important step in enabling people to obtain more information about their health.
“We are confident that these features can help users obtain information that helps them when speaking with their doctors,” said Simple Desai, MD and Vice President of Health, Apple. With the application of the ECG and the arrhythmia feature, customers will be able to better understand aspects of heart health.
How the new features work with the Apple Watch
The electrodes built into the Digital Crown and the crystal on the back of Apple’s fourth-generation smartwatches work with an ECG app to enable customers to record an ECG similar to one-way measurements. All that the user has to do is open the ECG application on the versions that support it and place his finger on the digital crown, and when the user touches the digital crown, the circuit is completed and the electrical signals of the heart are measured. Then, after 30 seconds, the heart rhythm is classified as a, e, as a sign of atrial fibrillation, sinus rhythm, low or high heart rate, or as an inconclusive finding.
The Health app on iPhone will then store the data, which can be shared when needed with doctors in a PDF format.
Commenting on the feature, Dr. Muhammad Fateh Arab, Cardiologist, said: “From my experience as a cardiologist, this ECG feature has the potential to save lives and will do so. Atrial fibrillation is very common in elderly patients, as well as in young adults. Depending on the condition, atrial fibrillation is not easy to spot. And having a tool on your wrist that allows you to check your health at any time may save this person’s life from a stroke, and it will also save health practitioners a lot of time in their attempt to investigate the problem.
The rhythm disturbance notification feature from time to time, with the help of the optical sensor, checks the rhythm of a heartbeat in the background, looking for any signs of tachycardia, which may indicate atrial fibrillation, and then alerts the user with a notification if the tachycardia is detected after 5 heart rhythm checks over a period of at least 65 minutes.
Apple says it has studied the feature of tachycardia notification in a special study of the heart that included more than 400,000 participants, and it is considered the largest study ever conducted to examine atrial fibrillation, according to its expression, making it also one of the largest studies of the cardiovascular system so far.