Smart watch to monitor heart

Posted by nene22 @nene22, Apr 3, 2019

I am thinking of getting an Apple watch that can tell when I am in Afib. Has anyone out there had experience with one?

Interested in more discussions like this? Go to the Heart Rhythm Conditions group.

@realitytest

Oops. Should have asked for a link to that "smart devices" discussion. Please let me know (hopefully this example will help me understand better the organization of the CONNECT site overall).

Thank you.

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Meant to delete this short comment, but don't know how.

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The Applewatch heart functions, are not limited to checking whether or not you're in AFIB. With an iPhone and apps (I use Cardiogram and SleepWatch) I'm able to check and compare my heart functions in previous hours, days, even further back.

I most rely on them to follow my heart rate during exercise and during sleep (otherwise, I'd never know). A. few other feedback markers through the Sleepwatch app: (during sleep). Heartrate, total restful sleep time, whether and how much my heart rate dips during sleep (a sign of good cardiac health), average BPM during sleep (e.g. last night 61 BPM), and average Sleeping HRV (heart rate variability – how much it varies between heartbeats. Supposedly more variability equals more heart health). It also tells me when and for how long I was awakened from sleep (for me, with nocturia, frequently – and helps see how long it takes me to fall back asleep), also depth of sleep. Without these gadgets, I'd never have known the connection between insomnia and AFIB – that when I can't fall into a restful sleep or awaken feeling jittery, I am actually mostly experiencing AFIB. (Deep breathing – also monitored by the Apple Watch – can do much to relieve it.)

None of the apps are foolproof (and I have to remember to make sure both the watch and iPhone are charged when going to sleep), but they've been truly. excellent at helping me learn what triggers worse sleep for me – e.g., low or no dip and tachycardia. Hints of AFIB. coinciding with them.

Thus I've learned that for me poor sleep (including tachycardia and AFIB) follows late eating especially excess consumption, that alcohol is a major trigger (even a very small amount, especially before bed), and (not surprisingly), late exercise (aerobic especially) makes my sleep light and broken. Confirms too the major effect of stress.

The Cardiogram feedback is fabulous, showing me how my heart rate varies with various kinds of exercise. For example, how HIET (High Interval Exercise Training) influences my heartrate as well as how I feel during – breathless, or not, etc. I always check my pulse rate while exercising too, but the picture over longer periods this app gives me is far more informative. Likewise, how quickly my pulse drops after stopping and more. I get many surprises – like a high BPM occurring without breathlessness or the other way around.

With the premium plan I. can send my cardiologist ECG records for desired days.
It's almost as good as a "cardiac event monitor" (much more expensive) though that gives far more detailed feedback on specific kinds of irregular heartbeat – i.e., skipped ventricular beats. My son purchased these for me to relieve us both, and I'm very grateful. Recently I was concerned about a new pattern during home stairstepping. (My pulse started high but then dropped considerably for the remainder of my hour's exercise – perhaps going from 160 BPM for 5 minutes dropping to ~ 130 BPM for the rest of the hour.). A mystery.

Will ask my cardiologist about it if the chest monitor son just received, confirms the Apple watch info. (Don't want to get panicky if the apps are giving false feedback.). All this is important medical information especially as both siblings and I have inherited cardiac problems, both our lipids and arrhythmia, one dying in his sleep a year ago.

Technology can really be a bonanza for people like us, especially for me as I've only just learned I have a serious eye problem whose medication (oral anticoagulants) endanger the eye condition. Perhaps I'll switch from the oral treatment to another safer way (safer, for me) to control my AFIB. Without these technological aids, my doctors wouldn't be able to fine tune such recommendations nearly as accurately.

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@realitytest

I'm greatly helped in following my AFIB by an up to date Apple Watch and an iPhone which (with the watch) can provide a read-out of sleep and round the clock heartbeat feedback through both a Cardiogram and Sleepwatch app.

Re triggers, I too have noted late eating (especially if more than I ought to) is a major trigger.
Recently I've also become aware that alcohol is a main trigger even in small quantities, and late exercising increases the likelihood of nighttime AFIB with tachycadia too.

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Me too on the late eating and alcohol (even really small amounts).

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@stephdoug123

Me too on the late eating and alcohol (even really small amounts).

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Really weird isn't it, about the eating and alcohol? The alcohol especially seems to have come on quite suddenly. No champagne for New Years, I guess, and I'd gotten a magnum bottle to share. Much too much for my son!

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@dogmom1

Yes, and I compared my ECG from the watch to the one in my cardiologist's office and they were remarkably close.

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It's also super handy to install special apps (I use Cardiogram and SleepWatch) to give you read outs of your heart function while you sleep and exercise.

They give you the read outs on an iPhone.

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