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Just like many other fitness bands and smartwatches, the Apple Watch comes with a heart rate tracker built into it. However according to studies done in the past, it has been found that the Apple Watch can actually be used to detect abnormal heart rhythms. Whether or not this was an unintended consequence of the sensor is unclear, but it seems to work.

In fact according to the folks behind the Cardiogram app, they have done a new study in which they found that the Apple Watch has a 97% accuracy when it comes to detecting abnormal heart rhythms. This is based on more than 139 million heart rate and step count measurements collected from 9,750 Cardiogram users who also enrolled themselves in the study.

According to Cardiogram co-founder Johnson Hsieh, “97% accuracy refers to the c-statistic, or area under the sensitivity-specificity curve. Surprisingly, both the sensitivity and specificity of DeepHeart were even higher than an FDA-cleared Apple Watch ECG attachment — 98% (vs 93%) sensitivity and 90% (vs 84%) specificity.”

That being said, we doubt that in its current form, the Apple Watch (or any other wearable with a heart rate sensor) can replace an EKG. However the fact that it is accurate means that at the very least it can alert wearers to impending problems and possibly save a life as we have seen in the past.

Filed in Apple >Gadgets. Read more about Apple Watch, Health, Smartwatch, Study and Wearable Tech.

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