How accurate is the heart rate of Apple Watch 4?

Discussion in 'Apple Watch' started by DennisdeWit, Dec 12, 2018.

  1. DennisdeWit macrumors regular

    DennisdeWit

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2016
    Location:
    The Netherlands
    #1
    Dear,

    How accurate is the heart monitor of the Apple Watch 4? I live in the Netherlands and have no possibility to use the ECG function. I am a patient to Tietze Syndrome, that mimics heart pain issues. So far, nothing serious has happened.

    However, I do have more of these Tietze issues than normal. So far, I have always ignored this pain and linked it to Tietze. The reason to start worrying, is because my Apple Watch gives abnormal rates. Yesterday I had a huge pain, took some paracetamol and went to sleep. My heart rate was 144 when I went to sleep, was 46 when I woke up.

    In my perfect world my Apple Watch is not accurate and it is a software issue. So I want to know, how accurate is the heart rate really? I do realize you're not a doctor, but based on your experiences I'd like to know if it is just the Watch or not.
     
  2. Knight3 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2018
    #2
    If you have a fair skin and no hair or tattoos on your arms it's pretty accurate to 1-2 beats compared to chest worn heart rate monitors.
     
  3. DennisdeWit thread starter macrumors regular

    DennisdeWit

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2016
    Location:
    The Netherlands
    #3
    I'm a bear on my arms :) I never shave my arms, so there's pretty much some hair :D
     
  4. Newtons Apple macrumors Core

    Newtons Apple

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2014
    Location:
    Jacksonville, Florida
    #4
    Depending on how much, hair can get in the way of the sensor. Some who have lots of hair on their arm will shave that single area. The HR on the Apple Watch is very accurate.
     
  5. Knight3 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2018
    #5
    In that case it depends on how snug it is on your wrist. I have slightly hairier arms than most men and it usually has me within 5 beats.
     
  6. DennisdeWit thread starter macrumors regular

    DennisdeWit

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2016
    Location:
    The Netherlands
    #6
    Ok. So let’s put a difference of 5 beats on it. Then it still is 138 in rest, while it should be 70 (that’s the normal rates I normally get). These weird high rest rates happen every now and then.

    Also, I never had such a low heartrate with my AW either. Strange.
     
  7. Knight3 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2018
    #7
    It fluctuates a lot depending on how close it is to your skin. The amount of hair on your arms makes the readings slightly more error prone.
     
  8. neutrino23 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2003
    Location:
    SF Bay area
    #8
    It is reported to be very good. Mine reports a very consistent value. If the strap is loose you might see odd readings. I used to have a leather strap that I wore loosely. Once in a while I’d see one very high reading. Since I’ve changed to a Milanese band which I wear snugly that doesn’t happen.
     
  9. akash.nu macrumors 603

    akash.nu

    Joined:
    May 26, 2016
    #9
    It seems to be pretty accurate. My resting heart rate seems to be floating between 60-68.
     
  10. Ntombi macrumors 68040

    Ntombi

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2008
    Location:
    Bostonian exiled in SoCal
    #10
    I have medium brown skin with hardly any hair, and mine is fairly accurate, according to the machines at my various doctors’ offices. My Apple Watch heart rate and the heart rate they get is usually within two beats per minute.
     
  11. Nathan King macrumors regular

    Nathan King

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2016
    Location:
    Omaha, NE
    #11
    Unless I’m lifting, my watch gives a reading within a beat or two of a chest strap monitor.
     
  12. Plett macrumors regular

    Plett

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2016
    #12
  13. akash.nu macrumors 603

    akash.nu

    Joined:
    May 26, 2016
    #13
    I’m not sure how accurate the watch is in measuring strength training though.
     
  14. OLDGUYWITHAHIFI Suspended

    OLDGUYWITHAHIFI

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2018
    #14
    I am middle aged, was at the doctors about a month ago just after getting my Series 4 LTE, and it was within one beat of my doctor's equipment. I wear it on my left wrist, and am not particularly hairy, but do have hair on my arms. Seems pretty accurate to me.
     
  15. akash.nu macrumors 603

    akash.nu

    Joined:
    May 26, 2016
    #15
    I’d really like to know if the heart rate works as well when one is not resting. Especially while exercising if someone has a chest strap, please can you verify the beats?
     
  16. SadChief, Dec 13, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2018

    SadChief macrumors regular

    SadChief

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2010
    Location:
    Montpellier, France
    #16
    Please be very, very careful. Myself I had those symptoms you talk about this summer. I went to the cardiologist next morning, and the cardiologist sent me on the spot (literally) at the heart clinic (Clinique du Millénaire in Montpellier, France). The surgery took place the same day in the afternoon. I was only a few hours away from a heart attack (myocardial infarction), they said. In fact I had some narrowed coronary arteries so they unblocked them using the "stent" technique (called "angioplasty"). I have now 4 stents in my chest and feel great, like never before. More about this technique here:
    https://www.healthline.com/health/stent#followup
    https://www.heart.org/-/media/data-import/downloadables/pe-abh-what-is-a-stent-ucm_300452.pdf
    You can google about this clinic, one of the best in the world - highly recommended. FYI, this kind of surgery costs about 8,000 euros including the 4 stents and also 2-day stay (I have a good medical insurance as all I had to pay from my pocket was 13 euros per day, and that's only because I wanted to enjoy a private single room).
    If I were you I'd consider those symptoms very seriously. My piece of advice: rush to your cardiologist.
    Good luck.
    (and yes, I had the opportunity to verify the heart accuracy as compared to my cardiologist instrumentation's one month later: really impressive - spot on! It was my Series 3 at that time).
     
  17. Kierkegaarden macrumors newbie

    Kierkegaarden

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2018
    Location:
    USA
    #17
    Dennis, I agree with SadChief in that you should make an appointment with a cardiologist to determine what is causing your symptoms. You could even visit the clinic mentioned in France if that is easier for you. Either way, please see someone.

    I’m sorry you’re dealing with these heart issues. I’m not familiar with Tietze Syndrome, but I’m sure it can cause anxiety since it mimics heart pain.

    All my best to you.
     
  18. Dobbel macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2018
    Location:
    Netherlands
    #18
    Hi Dennis,
    The Applewatch is highly accurate, compare it regularly with other sensors.

    Best i can suggest you is buy the Polar H10 chest strap which measures ECG and compare with watch.
    Is also best to have electrical ecg untill AW4 gets ecg in Netherlands........i’m also wating

    Fred in Holland
     
  19. DennisdeWit thread starter macrumors regular

    DennisdeWit

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2016
    Location:
    The Netherlands
    #19
    Thanks for all the replies!

    I have called my doctor today. I will not turn this into a medical thread. The question was: are the measurements of the AW4 correct?

    The answer is: yes, they are correct. The doctor confirms high heartrates are possible in my situation. He says it is caused by the Tietze’s Syndrome. The pain in my chest is very heavy due to inflammation of the cartilage of my chest. This is what Tietzes Syndrome does.

    Because of this giant pain (I have a hard time standing up then, as it always gives big pain in my ribs and shoulder), my heart is stressed and raises to such high values.

    The low values are normal because I went to sleep after the inflammation attack. The doctor prescribed some infection stoppers and pain killers. It should be fine after a week. However, the doctor noted down this question and told me I have to call as soon as I start feeling worse.

    Tietzes Syndrome for sure is very painful. I have had several ambulances being called because it mimics heart attacks a lot.

    I am glad it’s something innocent and I can turn 100 with it. And yes, the Apple Watch is accurate, so folks, if something is wrong, don’t ignore it!
     

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