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JACC Scientific Statement Examines Promises and Pitfalls of Wearable Technologies in CV Care

Direct-to-consumer (D2C) wearables are becoming increasingly popular in cardiovascular health management but require a collaborative approach among stakeholders to effectively integrate them into cardiovascular care and ensure they do not overburden the health care system, according to a JACC Scientific Statement published Jan. 29 in JACC.  

Niraj Varma, MB, ChB, FACC, et al., write that with the potential promise of D2C wearables also comes many pitfalls that must be acknowledged. While wearables offer affordable and accessible health care data to help manage cardiovascular disorders, there are challenges, such as “unregulated use of these devices, including questionable data reliability, potential misinterpretation of information, unintended psychological impacts, and an influx of clinically nonactionable data that may overburden the health care system.”

In the Scientific Statement, the authors illustrate these pitfalls by using atrial fibrillation (AFib) but note that the same principles may extend to the applications of other cardiovascular disorders. The authors compare traditional AFib management with wearable alert-based management. They also look at the accuracy of the current technology, behavioral heterogeneity, data privacy and security and more.

They state that D2C wearables “promise novel paradigms of disease screening, diagnosis, and management, thus widening treatment options and setting a foundation for personalized medicine” but will also require “a collaborative effort among a broader set of stakeholders to evaluate and position them in cardiovascular care. “

Clinical Topics: Arrhythmias and Clinical EP, Atrial Fibrillation/Supraventricular Arrhythmias

Keywords: Atrial Fibrillation, Precision Medicine, Wearable Electronic Devices, Delivery of Health Care, Technology

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