Heart

Heart diagnosis now via mobile phone app - results more accurate than with conventional tests


How effective is an app for diagnosing heart disease

Physicians have now found that a smartphone app is five times more effective in diagnosing serious heart conditions than the current standard tests.

In their current study, the University of Edinburgh scientists found that an app for smartphones detects serious heart disease much more effectively than standard tests. The experts published the results of their study in the English-language journal "EClinical Medicine".

App runs on Apple and Android devices

The study involved around 240 patients who had irregular heartbeats or who felt light-headed in emergency rooms in the UK. Just over half of the patients were equipped with the so-called AliveCor KardiaMobile app, which is available on Apple and Android devices. Whenever there were irregularities in the heart, the test subjects should activate the device and the result of the test was finally sent to a doctor. In the meantime, 116 patients underwent standard tests. If no special diagnosis was made, the test subjects were told that they should go to an emergency room or their family doctor if they experience any symptoms.

Occurring costs can be greatly reduced

After 90 days, the doctors were able to make a diagnosis in 56 percent of the patients using the smartphone app. The average diagnosis lasted 9.5 days. With the usual standard care, however, only ten percent of the patients were diagnosed in an average time of 43 days. Another big difference was the cost. The new smartphone technology cut diagnostic costs from £ 1,395 to £ 474. It has been shown that this device is a simple and inexpensive way to diagnose cardiac arrhythmias, in which sufferers usually had to go to the emergency room a few times to make a diagnosis. If people only have harmless palpitations, this device can quickly calm them down, while people with serious heart problems can get the help they need right away.

App is already in use

The British Heart Foundation's experts say the technology app should be introduced in all emergency services across the country in a press release. New technologies such as AliveCor can make diagnosis easier. For this reason, NHS England made thousands of the necessary devices available to general practitioners last year. (as)

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