The brilliant invention that turns any cell phone into a machine to make electrocardiograms

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KardiaMobile working with a mobile

This accessory allows you to record the body’s electrical impulses and display them on the phone screen, thus taking care of your health.

When Apple presented the Apple Watch in 2015, not even the managers themselves were clear about the final approach that the device would have. Finally, health was the main orientation that it would have, and that is something replicable to many other smart watches and bracelets. The simplest models are based on counting steps, measuring your pulse or knowing whether or not you are stressed, but Others that are more advanced are capable of performing more complex tests, such as electrocardiograms..

The Apple Watch itself, or watches like the Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro, are capable of performing these tests, which, Although they do not reach the reliability of a high-precision medical device, they are very powerful, and above all convenient. Having such a device with you at all times may be more useful than having an electrocardiogram every few months in a hospital.

The problem is that watches that have these functions are not exactly cheap. They are the high-end models, which have prices around 400 and 500 euros, if not more. Obviously, that distances them from a large audience. Furthermore, their use, although not particularly complex, does represent a certain barrier to entry for some people.

A very useful accessory

That’s where a device designed by the company AliveCor comes into play, which allows you to easily perform electrocardiograms using the mobile screen to obtain the data. It is called KardiaMobile and it is not particularly expensive, it can be purchased for 149 euros.

This device, the size of a lipstick stick, but much flatter, it is easily transportable and allows you to always carry it with you. Use is very simple, and you just have to pair it with your mobile phone and install the Kardia application. Once that is done, you just have to open the application, click on the Register button and wait for the process to finish, which lasts 30 seconds.

KardiaMobile

When the application is finished, it will show and store the data, in addition to offering a recording of those 30 seconds in which you can see all the electrocardiogram measurements taken. If the system has detected possible atrial fibrillation, it will show it in an orange bar in the application, to consult a doctor. This product has instant detection of the three most common cardiac arrhythmias.

There is another model, the KardiaMobile 6L, which has two electrodes on the top for the fingers and one on the bottom to make contact with the skin of the left leg. The KardiaMobile 6L is a more advanced device that allows measuring up to six electrocardiogram leads (I, II, III, aVL, aVR and aVF) without cables or gels. This allows doctors to see some arrhythmias that may be leading indicators of cardiovascular disease.

A person having an electrocardiogram with KardioCard

The last of the products of this company is KardiaCard, a device the size of a credit card which also allows electrocardiograms to be performed. Sun form factor makes it extremely easy to carry around, to take measurements whenever necessary. Furthermore, unlike the other two devices, it does not use Wi-Fi, so it uses the mobile’s Bluetooth to be able to take measurements anywhere. Of course, in this case the battery is not replaceable and lasts about two years with normal use.

A subscription for more data

This product offers unlimited functions when performing electrocardiograms, detecting atrial fibrillation, bradycardia, tachycardia or an abnormal heart rhythm in just 30 seconds. ECGs can be saved to the phone or emailed to the doctor. You can also maintain weight and blood pressure control.

KardiaCare

However, the company also offers a periodic subscription called KardiaCare (9.99 euros/month or 99.99 euros per year) which allows you to have much more data available. Specifically, it offers the detection of more types of arrhythmias, such as atrial sinus rhythm with PVC.

Also You will receive a review of the electrocardiograms every three months by a cardiac physiologist. A report summarizing all EKG recordings can be downloaded monthly, allowing for sharing with your doctor or for long-term monitoring.

KardiaCare Report

Additionally, if there are family members who are caring for the patient, It is possible to configure the option to automatically share electrocardiograms with them, or with caregivers through a feature called Inner Circle. And although it is not the main function, this app also allows, with the subscription, to set reminders to take specific medications according to doctors’ recommendations.

Does not replace the doctor

Like the rest of the devices that provide health parameters, The KardiaMobile does not replace a doctor or the periodic check-ups that a patient should have.. The purpose of this type of product is to allow diagnostic tests to be carried out at home to find out if there is any type of alteration and, if in doubt, go to the doctor.

Of course, these devices, like other similar ones, must be certified by the relevant health commissions of the different countries, to confirm that they are what they are. reliable enough to obtain relevant data. They will not reach the level of precision of much more expensive medical equipment, but that is not expected of them either.

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Abraham
Expert tech and gaming writer, blending computer science expertise