At present, doctors mainly use the throat swabs to test for COVID-19. So using a smartwatch to detect the new coronavirus might sound amazing. Anyways, according to 9to5 Mac reports, two studies have shown that smart wearable devices such as the Apple Watch can detect seven days earlier the symptoms of the new coronavirus infection. The success rate is also quite high.
As we all know, the Apple Watch has health tracking functions that have almost reached the professional medical level. In recent years, news about Apple Watch saving lives has also been common.
Of course, it would be better if we can use these smartwatches to detect the new coronavirus. Therefore, scientists conducted two independent studies.
First research results
One of the studies was from Mount Sinai Medical Center. Researchers recruited 300 Mount Sinai medical staff from April 29 to September 29, 2020. All subjects were wearing Apple Watches.
They used the heart rate variability of the Apple Watch to analyze the heart rate variability. The heart rate variability can measure the working condition of the human immune system. Through this change, it can detect whether the wearer is infected with the new coronavirus 7 days before the symptoms appear.
The researchers said that due to the development of inflammation in the human body, people infected with the new coronavirus often have lower heart rate variability. ‘Our goal was to use tools to identify infections at time of infection or before people knew they were sick.’
Second research results
Another study is from Stanford University. The subjects in the study were wearing various smart wearable devices such as Apple Watch, Garmin and Fitbit. The study found that these devices could indicate changes in resting heart rate “up to 9.5 days prior to the onset of symptoms” in coronavirus-positive patients.
Researchers said that the rapid increase in heart rate indicates that symptoms of new coronavirus pneumonia have begun to appear. People infected with the new coronavirus often have symptoms of increased heart rate. And this symptom is a long-term symptom. And it is not present at the initial illness or even after the virus is cleared.
Using data from the smartwatch, researchers were able to determine two-thirds of cases 4-7 days before the onset of symptoms. They also invented an early warning system. It can sound an alarm when the wearer’s heart rate rises for a long time.
Of course, the ability of wearable devices to detect the new coronavirus before symptoms appear cannot be a substitute for the nucleic acid testing. ‘We need more research to prove the accuracy of the data and establish the correlation between Apple Watch and other wearable devices in the detection of new coronavirus.’
The current research proves that relying on these devices can warn potential dangers, not only enable them to carry out virus detection and isolation measures earlier, but also prevent them from becoming severely ill patients.