A new study investigated the blood pressure monitoring capabilities of the Samsung Galaxy Watch and found that although the watch can be used for daily BP monitoring, the measurement stability suffers two weeks beyond the calibration.
The results from this new study were made available this month by a team of South Korean researchers who analyzed close to thirty-six thousand blood pressure readings from 760 participants.
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This study evaluated the feasibility and measurement stability of smartwatch-based cuffless BP monitoring in real-world conditions.
Users of the first smartwatch-based cuffless BP monitor approved in Korea (Samsung Galaxy Watch) were invited to upload their data from using the device for 4 weeks post-calibration.
Each participant obtained 1.5 ± 1.3 readings/day, and 19.7% of the participants obtained measurements every day.
Blood pressure readings showed considerable variability, mainly depending on the day and time of the measurement. There was a trend towards higher BP levels on Mondays than on other days of the week and on workdays than on weekends.
The results show that the average pre-post calibration error for systolic BP (difference in 7-day BP before and after calibration), was 6.8 ± 5.6 mmHg and was increased with higher systolic BP levels before calibration.
The researchers clearly state that the stability of BP measurement post calibration and the standardization and optimal time interval for recalibration needs further investigation.
These results show that there is still more work to be done when it comes to blood pressure monitoring capabilities via a smartwatch-based cuffless BP monitoring.
There have been various rumors and reports suggesting that Fitbit and Apple may be pursuing cuffless monitoring. It remains to be seen what tweaks, if any, these companies do to overcome the challenges associated with calibration.
As of writing, the Samsung Galaxy Watch has yet to obtain FDA approval for Blood Pressure monitoring. It is possible that the upcoming Galaxy Watch may have new modifications for blood pressure monitoring algorithms, so stay tuned as we wait for new updates from Samsung.