NOV 16, 2018 7:03 PM PST

An App That Detects Fatal Heart Attacks?

WRITTEN BY: Nouran Amin

Imagine having a smart phone that is capable of determining a fatal heart attack? An international research study has found that an app is capable of identifying an ST-Elevation Myocardial Infarction (STEMI), which is a heart attack where the artery is completely blocked, has the diagnostic accuracy as a standard 12-lead electrocardiogram (ECG).

Watch this short video below about ECG diagnosis of STEMI:

 

 

"We found the app helped us diagnose heart attacks very effectively -- and it didn't indicate the presence of a heart attack when one wasn't occurring," says study lead researcher, J. Brent Muhlestein, MD, of the Intermountain Medical Center Heart Institute.

STEMI is a serious type of heart attack, and often fatal, which involves the blockage of one of the heart's major arteries that supply oxygen and nutrient-rich blood to the heart muscle. Findings of the study, referred to as ‘ST LEUIS International Multicenter Study’, can advance treatments after a STEMI heart attack in order to help save lives.

"The sooner you can get the artery open, the better the patient is going to do. We found this app may dramatically speed things up and save your life," Dr. Muhlestein.

Credit: www.sciencekids.co.nz

The app is known as the AliveCor app, which when administered through a smartphone with a two-wire attachment, it can distinguish STEMI from not-STEMI ECGs accurately and with sensitivity in comparison to a traditional 12-lead ECG. Essentially, the app can take an electrocardiogram on the spot and send the results where a cardiologist can review it and interpret immediately,

"If somebody gets chest pain and they haven't ever had chest pain before, they might think it's just a bug or it's gas and they won't go to the emergency room," Dr. Muhlestein said. "That's dangerous, because the faster we open the blocked artery, the better the patient's outcome will be."

Source: Science Daily

About the Author
  • Nouran earned her BS and MS in Biology at IUPUI and currently shares her love of science by teaching. She enjoys writing on various topics as well including science & medicine, global health, and conservation biology. She hopes through her writing she can make science more engaging and communicable to the general public.
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