TYLER, TX (KLTV) - The newest apple watch has plenty of features for you to try. One of those features is an ECG.
Now it’s not a full, 12-lead ECG that you would receive at the hospital, but it’s a great one-lead start.
Owners of the Apple Watch Series Four can update their phone and their watch to the latest iOS and download the ECG app.
To use the app, you place your finger on the crown for 30 seconds and get back your results. Hopefully it says Sinus Rhythm – referring to a regular heartbeat – if not, it may warn you of atrial fibrillation, commonly known as A-fib.
“Atrial fibrillation is a very common arrhythmia; if you look at all the research, about ten percent of the population over 60 years old has it,” says Dr. Muhammad Chaudhry, a cardiologist at UT Health Tyler.
“If you’re asking me, if you can completely detect A-fib just by having the watch, I don’t think so. But it will be there in the future. Things are changing very fast, technology is improving.”
Dr. Rick Coker is an avid Apple user. He has the newest watch and uses the ECG app occasionally.
“I think everyone is worried that people will replace physicians, but that’s not it. It’s a good monitor, it’s a good screener.”
He says if he had A-fib he would use the app a lot more often and rely on its results.
Dr. Chaudhry thinks the watch’s monitoring is a great first step.
“I think it’s a very reasonable step to start with, but it doesn’t mean that if the watch doesn’t detect an arrhythmia that you don’t have one.”
As with any health monitoring device, don’t completely rely on it. If you’re having symptoms of A-fib, go see a doctor. If you’re getting the new Apple Watch for Christmas, check out the new ECG app.