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  • Darshan Pareek

Samsung launches ECG, blood pressure features for Galaxy watches in India

Image of Samsung Galaxy Watch

Korean electronics giant Samsung  on Friday announced the launch of blood pressure and ECG features on its Galaxy 4 and 5 watches in India with an update in its health monitor app.

The Irregular Heart Rhythm Notification (IHRN) feature was last year approved by the FDA for Samsung Galaxy Watches.

Along with the existing on-demand Electrocardiogram (ECG) function, IHRN actively monitors heart rhythms, specifically those indicating atrial fibrillation (AFib), directly from the user's wrist.

AFib is an irregular heart rhythm where the atria quiver instead of contracting properly, at times leading to blood clots, increasing the risk of stroke and other heart-related complications. Symptoms vary, and management involves medical intervention, lifestyle changes, and, sometimes, medication or procedures.

The feature is designed to assist millions of individuals globally who may be unaware of potential heart risks.

"We’re excited to announce that Irregular Heart Rhythm Notification, designed to help millions of people around the world who may not be aware of a potential heart risk, has been cleared by the FDA," Hon Pak, vice president and head of the Digital Health Team at Samsung Electronics, had said in a press release last year at the time of the launch of the feature.

"This is yet another example of how Samsung prioritizes proactive safety solutions and enables users to receive a more holistic understanding of their cardiovascular and overall health."

Cardiovascular disease, a leading global cause of death, often involves AFib, which is considered a warning sign for significant cardiovascular issues like stroke and heart failure. AFib cases can be asymptomatic, making individuals unaware of their risk.

The Galaxy Watch already offers tools, such as the Samsung BioActive Sensor, on-demand ECG recording, and the HR Alert function, to help users understand their heart health by detecting abnormal heart rates. The new IHRN feature adds another layer of health monitoring.

Once activated in the Samsung Health Monitor app, IHRN checks for irregular heart rhythms in the background using the Galaxy Watch's BioActive Sensor. If a certain number of consecutive measurements are irregular, the watch alerts the user to potential AFib activity, prompting them to take an ECG for a more accurate measurement.

Apple's smartwatches have been coming with an irregular rhythm notification feature since 2018.


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