Apple Says watchOS 5.1.2 Coming Today With ECG App Enabled on Apple Watch Series 4


AppleFan360

macrumors 68020
Jan 26, 2008
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I have an irregular heart rhythm condition. Its going to be interesting to see if the watch picks it up.
 

billcoff

macrumors newbie
Sep 24, 2014
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If someone falls into a low risk category, then I'm pretty sure on 99% of that demographic will not check that frequently. But if you have a known issue, or fall into a higher risk category then more people will use it.

I've recently turned 50, have no known heart issues, keep myself very fit but still fully plan to use this feature regularly once it's available.

Why? Because I know two of the members of the Triathlon club I'm member of who have died of heart attach in their mid-50's. Both super fit men who did IronMan events, but didn't realise they had underlying health issues.
I was a long distance runner for over 40 years. In my late 70s now. Still very fit, but gave up the running for walking and a daily power vinyasa yoga class. As a result of all those years of running I have an enlarged left ventricle (LVH), buildup of plaque in the arteries, and a resting heart rate of 41. While I have never had any symptoms, I monitor my vitals regularly. I have a KardiaMobile EKG monitor, which works pretty well, except it won't record an EKG if the heart rate is less than 50. I do a few jumping jacks before taking a reading. It appears the Apple Watch will have the same limitation. AliveCor, the maker of the KardiaMobile, says it plans to release an updated version of its technology in April, which will be a six-lead ECG reader, as opposed to Apple's current release, which is a one-lead ECG.
 
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TheShadowKnows!

macrumors 6502a
Sep 30, 2014
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National Capital Region
ECG support more likely than not comes will come with foot-long, lawyerese, "agree-to-proceed" disclaimers.

Wonder about false negatives which would be a class-action suit waiting to happen. False-positives not so much -- just nuisance.
 

citysnaps

macrumors 603
Oct 10, 2011
5,126
7,759
San Francisco
And 99% of users will try it once, find out their heart is normal and never touch it again, despite vehemently demanding it every day for the past 2 months.
And a number of people with a modicum of curiosity may try it out now and then, and discover they may have a heart condition that warrants a visit to a doctor. And after that, some will get the medical attention they need that could very well save their lives.

Yes, we all know that that the above will cause some unnecessary doctor visits. That's a given.
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ECG support more likely than not comes will come with foot-long, lawyerese, "agree-to-proceed" disclaimers.

Wonder about false negatives which would be a class-action suit waiting to happen. False-positives not so much -- just nuisance.
Well, of course. That's a given. And some people with will real cardiac issues will get the treatment they need.
 
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PhillyGuy72

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Sep 13, 2014
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I will wait 24-36 hours - like all updates - to see if there are issues with installing. (That "bricking" issue about a month ago always scares me, other issues) But I am hopeful this EKG will work.

Kind of hate saying this, MAYBE someone on this forum who knows they do have an irregular heartbeat, has an AW4 might confirm this does work. Maybe there's an article online from someone that has tried this. I have to look...honestly I totally forgot about this feature until I saw the headline.
 

Benito

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Jan 5, 2010
569
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Toronto, Canada
I hope this will work for us in Canada if we have our location set as USA. I have my devices set up this way so that I get Apple News.
 

midkay

macrumors regular
Jan 27, 2008
175
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This is a big, big milestone. I’m impressed as heck and excited for Apple to expand even further on the watch’s already-remarkable capabilities. This is amazingly cutting-edge – can you believe just 10 years ago the incredibly basic iOS 1.0 was absolutely flooring us? – yet still is only scratching the surface of what is possible. Imagine another 10 years? Computing is going to evolve so much.
 
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avanpelt

macrumors 68030
Jun 2, 2010
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What’s up with Apple pre-announcing software updates? I guess this is going to be a new thing? Not that I’m complaining.
 
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WatchFromAfar

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Jan 26, 2017
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I'm excited for this. It's nice Apple isn't totally leaving people with older Watches in the dust with heart updates.
Until Apple can be held responsible for a death they shouldn't be in the health business; either get in or out
 

npmacuser5

macrumors 65816
Apr 10, 2015
1,199
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I have an irregular heart rhythm condition. Its going to be interesting to see if the watch picks it up.
Should, here is a backup plan for you. Qadoarm blood pressure for sure does. A very good device, integrates with the Apple Health app, using it for a year now.
 

frumpy16

macrumors 6502a
Dec 8, 2008
841
512
I’m infinitely curious how well or not well this works, since Apple software quality control (in general not just the watch) has taken a serious nosedive in the past several years

5.1 bricked watches! 5.1.1 fixed it supposedly, and now 5.1.2 will be in control of your ECG monitoring. That’s quite the progression
Apple would have to have demonstrated safety and efficacy of the device for its intended use to gain clearance. Sure, it could have bugs but FDA clearance ups the bar in terms of what you can expect. This is the same device classification as a CT machine in a hospital for example. You expect accuracy and reliability from that when you go to the hospital.
 
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thadoggfather

macrumors G4
Oct 1, 2007
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Apple would have to have demonstrated safety and efficacy of the device for its intended use to gain clearance. Sure, it could have bugs but FDA clearance ups the bar in terms of what you can expect. This is the same device classification as a CT machine in a hospital for example. You expect accuracy and reliability from that when you go to the hospital.
One would hope. Food & Drug Administration is a bit buggy itself tho ;)

and they agreed to certify it on basis of hardware, at the time of its announcement if I'm not mistaken, not the software side -- no?
 

gwaizai

macrumors regular
Aug 8, 2016
181
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Turning the world into hypochondriacs one person at a time.
It's real folly to play your own cardiologist, you're going to drive yourself nuts.
Say goodbye to your peace of mind.
 

frumpy16

macrumors 6502a
Dec 8, 2008
841
512
One would hope. Food & Drug Administration is a bit buggy itself tho ;)

and they agreed to certify it on basis of hardware, at the time of its announcement if I'm not mistaken, not the software side -- no?
Looks like it was actually the SW that was classified. The notification and the ECG app were both separately cleared/registered. If you really want to nerd out, here's some reading. :)

photoplethysmograph analysis software for over-the-counter use: https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cdrh/cfdocs/cfRL/rl.cfm?lid=588436&lpcd=QDA

ELECTROCARDIOGRAPH SOFTWARE FOR OVER-THE-COUNTER USE: https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cdrh/cfdocs/cfRL/rl.cfm?lid=588436&lpcd=QDA

De Novo Reclassification Order (including details of requirements from FDA): https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/cdrh_docs/pdf18/DEN180042.pdf
 

nt5672

macrumors 68000
Jun 30, 2007
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True... Statistically, the percentage of people who don't have any heart rhythm issues is more like 95%. However, for that remaining 5%, including my wife who has SVT, it is literally a potential life saver!
Yep, and if you look at the percentages by age, older adults almost always have some heart issues or are afraid of developing heart issues. Cardiac arrhythmias and Congestive heart failure are the leading causes of hospitalization of the elderly.
 
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WatchFromAfar

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In theory, it should be a case of modifying 'Region' with the Language & Region section of the general settings within the Apple Watch app. Not long to find out
So is the Doctor or Nurse going to take you seriosly when you've given out instructions how to get arould Apple's health app?
 
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nt5672

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Jun 30, 2007
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One would hope. Food & Drug Administration is a bit buggy itself tho ;)

and they agreed to certify it on basis of hardware, at the time of its announcement if I'm not mistaken, not the software side -- no?
The only thing the FDA needs is a big check and it will do what it's told.
 
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lanegandy

macrumors member
Jul 21, 2015
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Long Beach, CA
There'll likely be security updates; they updated tvOS after all, and that never has new features. So every supported Watch should get it.
They are actually giving every watch back to the S1 the ability to measure irregular heart beat in the background as well. Not as good as an ECG but definitely a useful feature.
 
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