Apple Watch best-selling smarwatch in the world, reason enough for enthusiasts and professionals alike to seek its usefulness in other areas of interest, such as managing the COVID-19 pandemic and diagnosing health problems.
The SARS-CoV-2 virus continues to be a significant global threat, and researchers and physicians are constantly looking for new testing methods to help diagnose people with the condition early. A study by the American Mount Sinai Institute shows that the Apple Watch can accurately diagnose COVID-19, up to one week before using conventional PCR tests.
The study called “Warrior Watch Study” involved the use of a dedicated application for Apple Watch and iPhone. The participants in the study were Mount Sinai staff and other health workers, the operation involving the monitoring and collection of health data. Study participants were also asked to complete a daily survey to provide direct information about potential COVID-19 symptoms and other factors, such as stress.
The information collected was combined with data on symptoms associated with COVID-19, such as fever, muscle aches, dry cough, gastrointestinal problems and loss of taste and smell.
Remarkably, the app used in combination with Apple Watch devices predicted COVID infections up to a week before the diagnosis was confirmed by conventional methods. The study also found that heart rate variability returned to normal fairly quickly, about 1-2 weeks after a positive test. The study’s authors believe that the experiments could help anticipate the results and isolate sick people from the healthy population, especially those at additional risk such as old age or other chronic diseases.
At the same time, early diagnosis of COVID-19 cases can also help protect medical staff, reducing the need for physical examination and testing using nasal swab.