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Smartphone Device Can Detect Undiagnosed A-Fib

Screening for atrial fibrillation with single-lead electrocardiogram feasible

THURSDAY, Oct. 13, 2016 (HealthDay News) — A small device synced to a smartphone may help identify new cases of atrial fibrillation (AF), according to a preliminary study published online Oct. 12 in Heart.

Between May 2014 and April 2015, 13,122 Hong Kong citizens participated in an AF screening. The pilot test involved a mobile electrocardiogram developed by AliveCor, a private company. The study involved an older version of AliveCor’s mobile electrocardiogram, called Kardia. It consists of a small, wireless component that attaches or sits in close proximity to a mobile phone or tablet, and syncs to a mobile app.

The researchers found that only 56 of those who were tested had results that couldn’t be interpreted; 101 were newly identified as having AF. Among those in the newly identified group, 66 had no symptoms of atrial defibrillation, the investigators found.

“Community screening for AF with single-lead electrocardiogram was feasible and it identified a significant proportion of citizens with newly diagnosed AF,” the authors write. “The prevalence of AF in a Chinese population in Hong Kong was comparable with that of contemporary Western counterparts. Apart from age and sex, different anthropometric parameters and cardiovascular comorbid conditions were identified as independent predictors of AF.”

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