Researchers from Radboudumc in Nijmegen and Eindhoven University of Technology are working on a watch that can recognize a cardiac arrest and which will then automatically activate emergency services. In theory a life saver for the 7,000 people who go into cardiac arrest every year when there is no one to call 911. The watch will still need a few years of development time.
The Algemeen Dagblad writes about the researchwhich is executed with subsidy from the Heart Foundation, also the initiator of this research. The Heart Foundation wants to do something for the approximately 17,000 people who suffer a cardiac arrest every year. In cardiac arrest, a person is unconscious and no longer breathing normally. If nothing happens, the person dies. In cardiac arrest, the heart often does not really stop, but the electrical system no longer works properly, so that the heart no longer pumps blood.
Within 6 minutes
The chance of survival is greatest if witnesses offer the right help within 6 minutes: call 112, start CPR and use an AED, according to the Heart Foundation. The later that happens, the greater the damage. In 7,000 to 8,000 of people in cardiac arrest, there is no one around to call emergency services. A watch or smartwatch that signals a cardiac arrest and then calls 911 can make a difference.
The smartwatch used in the study has sensors that not only signal that the heart has stopped pumping, but also that someone is falling. Those two things together are an indication that it is a cardiac arrest. But the watch is made in such a way that it can also signal that someone is in cardiac arrest during sleep.
More smart watches
The further development is estimated to take about five years, so you can’t buy the watch for the time being. There are other smartwatches for sale that can measure your heart rate and blood pressure and that can take a heart film. But the consumer smartwatches are usually not useful in the medical world, because they are not reliable enough for that. Knowing more? Read more about the technical background of this watch here from Corsano Health.