HumanInsight Accuracy of the Apple Watch Oxygen Saturation Measurement in Adults and Children with Congenital Heart Disease
Pediatr Cardiol. 2022 Aug 22. doi: 10.1007/s00246-022-02987-w. Online ahead of print.
As new customer health devices have been spread throughout the consumer market in recent years, it now needs to be evaluated if they also fulfill the requirements of clinical use. The Apple Watch Series 6 provides a new health feature with its oxygen saturation measurement. The aim of this prospective, investigator-initiated, single-arm study was to compare transcutaneous oxygen saturation measurements using the Apple Watch 6 with the conventional method of pulse oximetry in patients with congenital heart disease. Patients of any age presenting at the Leipzig Heart Center, Department for pediatric cardiology, were included. After obtaining informed consent, the routine oxygen saturation measurement with the pulse oximeter was taken and simultaneously three measurements with the Apple Watch. A total of 508 patients were enrolled. Comparing children and adults in terms of measurement success shows a statistically significant difference with a higher proportion of unsuccessful measurements in children, but no difference concerning correct versus incorrect Apple Watch measurements. Noticeable, strapping on the watch properly around the patient's wrists significantly improved the measurements compared to a watch only laid on. The study demonstrated that oxygen saturation measurement with the Apple Watch 6 is not yet up to the medical standard of pulse oximetry, too large a proportion of the measurements remain either unsuccessful or incorrect. While a high proportion of unsuccessful measurements in children can be attributed to movement, the cause in adults usually remains unclear. Further influencing factors on a correct, or successful measurement could not be found.
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