Tag Archives: smartphone app

Do NOT Rely on AF Detect Smartphone App To Diagnose Atrial fibrillation

I’m writing this brief post as a warning to any individuals who have purchased the  smartphone app AF Detect (screen shot below from Apple app store.) It is not a reliable detector of atrial fibrillation (AF).

screen-shot-2017-02-19-at-11-25-56-am

 

A patient of mine with AF recently  purchased this app unbeknownst to me. He  relied on its faulty information which  reassured hm he was not in AF when in fact he was in AF. Such misinformation has the potential to lead to dangerous delays in diagnosis.

There are multiple reviews on the Apple and Google app sites which confirm the total lack of reliability of this app to diagnose AF with screen-shot-2017-02-19-at-9-18-10-ammultiple instances of both failure to detect known AF and inappropriate diagnosis of AF when rhythm was not AF.

In the description of the app the company says the app will “transform you rmobile device into a personal heart rate monitor and atrial fibrillation detector”.

However after purchasing the app and before using it you see this disclaimer which img_8348states it is not to be used for any medical diagnosis.

 

 

 

 

 

 

I will be performing a more detailed analysis of this app’s performance in the future and contacting the FDA about the danger such inaccurate medical testing confers on victims.

In the meantime if you have any experience with this app or other apps claiming to detect AF reliably using detection of the pulse from finger application to the camera lens please share them with me (via email  DRP@theskepticalcardiologist.com or via comments below.)

-ACP

Instant Blood Pressure Smartphone App Does Not Accurately Measure Blood Pressure

The skeptical cardiologist was shocked to hear that there was a smartphone app which he had heretofore been unaware of that claimed to measure blood pressure.

Made by Aura Life and named Instant Blood Pressure, the app was apparently selling like hotcakes on the Apple app store until it was abruptly removed in 2015.

Screen Shot 2016-03-09 at 4.51.12 PM

Users are instructed to put the top edge of the smartphone  on the left side of the chest while placing the right index finger over the smartphone’s camera

Since it was created by “a team of forward-thinking biomedical engineers and software developers” and is to be used to measure one’s blood pressure one might be fooled into thinking that it might accurately measure blood pressure. Don’t be silly!

The IBP web site clearly states:

“Instant Blood Pressure is intended for recreational use only. It is not a replacement or substitute for a cuff or other blood pressure monitor. Instant Blood Pressure’s performance and accuracy characteristics do not meet international standards for a blood pressure monitor intended for clinical use.”

How does one use a blood pressure device that is not really intended to measure blood pressure  for recreational use? Beats me.

A research letter in JAMA Internal Medicine reports that the app is really inaccurate: 77% of patients with hypertensive blood pressure levels were assured that their blood pressure was in the nonhypertensive range.

The authors note:

Between its release on June 5, 2014, and removal on July 30, 2015 (421 days), the IBP app spent 156 days as one of the top 50 best-selling iPhone apps; at least 950 copies of this $4.99 app were sold on each of those days.2Validation of this popular app or any of the similar iPhone apps still available (eg, Blood Pressure Pocket, Quick Blood Pressure Measure and Monitor), have not been performed.

Don’t rely on any smartphone app to accurately measure your blood pressure. None of them have been validated and they are being promoted by charlatans looking for a quick buck off naive consumers.

Excuse me while I check my BP with my Omron 10 real BP monitor. I think it might be really high now.

-ACP