Mobile Health Topic of the Week

Apple Heart Study versus Huawei Heart Study

Atrial fibrillation is the most common arrhythmia, affecting 2-3% of the population. Patients suffer from palpitations and/or shortness of breath. They are also at increased risk of stroke, heart failure and dementia. Early diagnosis allows for timely initiation of treatment, which can prove life-saving. Apple and Huawei believe that the photoplethysmography sensors on their wearables can warn their users about atrial fibrillation episodes.

The Apple Heart Study and the Huawei Heart Study investigated this hypothesis.

Take-home messages

  • Both devices appear capable of detecting AF episodes.
  • We don’t know how many AF episodes went undetected.
  • We await to see how Apple’s one-lead ECG performs in upcoming clinical trials.

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