Tim Cook responds to reader's Apple Watch ECG experience

Posted:
in Apple Watch
Apple CEO Tim Cook has thanked an AppleInsider reader for telling him a story about how the Apple Watch ECG function detected a heart condition that a hospital didn't previously detect, with Cook saying the stories inspire Apple "to keep pushing forward."




In the email exchange provided to AppleInsider, reader Raymond thanks Cook for "bringing the Apple Watch to market." The evening before the message was sent, Raymond said he "felt strange," and used the ECG feature of his own Apple Watch and that of his wife's to double-check the readings.

After the Apple Watch pair revealed four detections of AFib, Raymond went to hospital to verify the situation. It turns out it was the same hospital that Raymond had visited in July after experiencing chest discomfort, but as he told AppleInsider, despite "a battery of tests and a catheter I was given the all clear."




In a further explanation of events, it was explained Raymond felt "a fluttering in my chest" and took "four separate readings," with the hospital later confirming it to be the case. In his prior visit to the hospital, his battery of tests included a cardiac angiogram and a stress test, but nothing appeared suggesting AFib at all.

"I will make sure all those I care about have an Apple Watch," ends Raymond's email to Cook.

Raymond admitted he wrote to Cook "fully not expecting a response," but received one anyway. Cook's response is brief, stating "I'm so glad you sought medical attention. Thanks for sharing your story with us - it inspires us to keep pushing forward."

The Apple Watch has been the subject of numerous stories where it has detected an ailment or saved someone's life. While many relate to the ECG function and high heart rate notifications, stories also cover the use of other features, including fall detection and using Siri to call for assistance.
Beats
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 36
    JinTechJinTech Posts: 775member
    Awesome. Stories like this never get old.
    lolliverBeatsBart Ygregoriusm
  • Reply 2 of 36
    Now that interaction with Tim Cook is possible, with a definite sign of product engagement from his side, may I advise him to make AppleWatch charging QI compatible. Advantage would be 5-fold:
    1. Better reliability and less placement sensitivity
    2. Easening critical charging implementation like Airpower
    3. Anticipating on future reverse charging
    4. Less internal production cost for Apple
    5. Lessening Apple’s public anti-trust profile by opening up a standard that shouldn’t have been proprietary in the first place
    edited August 2020 lkruppmuthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 3 of 36
    spice-boyspice-boy Posts: 1,439member
    Does expect the Apple Watch to tell anything while you are having a heart attack, just ask a good friend of mine. 
    lkrupp
  • Reply 4 of 36
    davgregdavgreg Posts: 879member
    Undiagnosed atrial fibrillation is a serious health risk. 

    I work in the medical field and have seen it firsthand. 

    As they gather more data and see how the watch can detect things, the wearables will become more and more important to maintaining good health. Some employers already give a discount to employees that wear them and some even will buy them for the employee.
    Beats
  • Reply 5 of 36
    BeatsBeats Posts: 2,527member
    Now that interaction with Tim Cook is possible, with a definite sign of product engagement from his side, may I advise him to make AppleWatch charging QI compatible. Advantage would be 5-fold:
    1. Better reliability and less placement sensitivity
    2. Easening critical charging implementation like Airpower
    3. Anticipating on future reverse charging
    4. Less internal production cost for Apple
    5. Lessening Apple’s public anti-trust profile by opening up a standard that shouldn’t have been proprietary in the first place

    The 5th one is so dumb. The tech industry has become like PC culture. You can't invent anything for yourself and it's offensive if you don't share your success.
    Bart YRayz2016yojimbo007
  • Reply 6 of 36
    Just practicing my email:
    Dear Tim,
    Please make the ECG feature available to Australians.
    Your company has registered devices with the Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods already https://bit.ly/3h2tZnt
    The ARTG accepts evidence from overseas regulators including FDA, Health Canada, European Union and Japan https://bit.ly/3kObtkR
    Please?
    Thanking you,
    John
    lkruppadinozJosephAUjony0
  • Reply 7 of 36
    XedXed Posts: 1,028member
    spice-boy said:
    Does expect the Apple Watch to tell anything while you are having a heart attack, just ask a good friend of mine. 
    The Watch very clearly states that it does not check for heart attacks. You were told this in the last thread you tried to jack so please stop posting stupid shit.


    edited August 2020 mobirdBeatslkruppBart Ybageljoeymac_dogqwerty52GeorgeBMaclordjohnwhorfinking editor the grate
  • Reply 8 of 36
    It is such a cool, simple, ridiculously-easy-to-use feature.

    The only problem is, every time I have a pain in my arm (e.g., because I slept funny), I end up doing a quick ECG check, just to make sure....  :#
    Bart Y
  • Reply 9 of 36

    jcbigears said:
    Just practicing my email:
    Dear Tim,
    Please make the ECG feature available to Australians.
    Your company has registered devices with the Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods already https://bit.ly/3h2tZnt
    The ARTG accepts evidence from overseas regulators including FDA, Health Canada, European Union and Japan https://bit.ly/3kObtkR
    Please?
    Thanking you,
    John
    It is already there. It's your regulators or government that are likely the issue. Weird, considering how long ago the US FDA approved this for the Watch.
    Bart Y
  • Reply 10 of 36
    It is such a cool, simple, ridiculously-easy-to-use feature.

    The only problem is, every time I have a pain in my arm (e.g., because I slept funny), I end up doing a quick ECG check, just to make sure....  :#
    You can rest easy, arm plain isn’t an sign of afib. 
  • Reply 11 of 36

    jcbigears said:
    Just practicing my email:
    Dear Tim,
    Please make the ECG feature available to Australians.
    Your company has registered devices with the Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods already https://bit.ly/3h2tZnt
    The ARTG accepts evidence from overseas regulators including FDA, Health Canada, European Union and Japan https://bit.ly/3kObtkR
    Please?
    Thanking you,
    John
    It is already there. It's your regulators or government that are likely the issue. Weird, considering how long ago the US FDA approved this for the Watch.
    How do you know it's already there?
  • Reply 12 of 36
    Bart YBart Y Posts: 36unconfirmed, member
    jcbigears said:
    Just practicing my email:
    Dear Tim,
    Please make the ECG feature available to Australians.
    Your company has registered devices with the Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods already https://bit.ly/3h2tZnt
    The ARTG accepts evidence from overseas regulators including FDA, Health Canada, European Union and Japan https://bit.ly/3kObtkR
    Please?
    Thanking you,
    John
    jcbigears said:
    It is already there. It's your regulators or government that are likely the issue. Weird, considering how long ago the US FDA approved this for the Watch.
    How do you know it's already there?
    All Apple Watches have the same hardware, simply because it’s easier to build one hardware module per series and encase in different materials. The hardware works in conjunction with approved apps in each country which allow hardware functionality and software management and monitoring.  For example, all Watches have a version of a pulse oximeter which is derived from the pulse monitor.  However, it’s never been turned on because either Apple has not asked for or received approval for it (in various countries) or it is not accurate enough (unlikely).  Pulse oximetry is rumored to be available with Watch 6 and / or the next Watch OS update.  We will see if all versions of Watch with the capability will activate this function.

    ECG hardware function is built into Watch 4 and 5, but only turned on in countries where it has received regulatory approval.  But approvals can be slow or lobbied against by other device makers or the medical establishment.  For example, S. Korea has just approved ECG function after 2 years.  This came on the heels of  of approval of similar function for the new Samsung Watch 3.

    both you and I hope that Apple has applied for various Watch health functions to be approved in most countries it sells Watches in, but the speed (or slowness) of approval is in the hands of governmental health departments or ministries, most of whom have been quite occupied recently.  That is no excuse, but it is reality.
    anantksundaram
  • Reply 13 of 36
    Beats said:
    Now that interaction with Tim Cook is possible, with a definite sign of product engagement from his side, may I advise him to make AppleWatch charging QI compatible. Advantage would be 5-fold:
    1. Better reliability and less placement sensitivity
    2. Easening critical charging implementation like Airpower
    3. Anticipating on future reverse charging
    4. Less internal production cost for Apple
    5. Lessening Apple’s public anti-trust profile by opening up a standard that shouldn’t have been proprietary in the first place

    The 5th one is so dumb. The tech industry has become like PC culture. You can't invent anything for yourself and it's offensive if you don't share your success.
    Whaha...!!
    If charger technology has become a competitive area of prowess worth protecting, - with the apparent aim of making the highly exciting spare AppleWatch charger market exclusive - the apparent intellectual advancement over the competition may need some serious reconsideration.
    Particularly as it seems a punch in their own face merely hampering their own development (ref. AitPower, iOS reverse charging) where they now miss far more profit/competitive edge
    Your comment is just hilarious
    edited August 2020
  • Reply 14 of 36
    netroxnetrox Posts: 1,051member
    spice-boy said:
    Does expect the Apple Watch to tell anything while you are having a heart attack, just ask a good friend of mine. 
    Apple Watch does not detect heart attacks. It's not possible. In order to diagnosis a heart attack requires several electrodes. Also, when you have a heart attack, you would know (chest pain, shortness of breath, etc) and should go to ER ASAP. They would use full EKG and blood tests to check for certain chemicals.


    GeorgeBMacking editor the grate
  • Reply 15 of 36
    Oh, look, more of the new "a reader's letter to which Tim Cook responds" genre, more decoy-ducks. Innovation, my ass! 
    WarrenBuffduckh
  • Reply 16 of 36
    First comment here, but doing so because Tim also replied to me. I'm not going to reveal what was said but I told him that after I'd moved to the other  side of the world from my family I got an iPad for my elderly parents, one of whom had Alzheimers and couldn't cope with tech anymore and the other who was terrified of tech. 

    I setup the iPad to auto answer after however many rings so that I could Facetime them with them not having to worry about it. If they weren't there it was no big deal, and if they were in the middle of anything when I called it was simple for me to hang up. 

    Basically the iPad, Facetime and those little features meant I could be in contact with my parents, right up until the very end. I thanked him for this because that to me was *priceless* and I cannot imagine not having had it. 

    And he replied. It was unexpected - I had emailed just... needing to say thanks. So yeah, he definitely has form and I can say I 100% appreciated the reply I got.
    gregoriusmqwerty52muthuk_vanalingamGeorgeBMacaderutterRayz2016jony0equality72521
  • Reply 17 of 36
    adinoz said:
    First comment here, but doing so because Tim also replied to me. I'm not going to reveal what was said but I told him that after I'd moved to the other  side of the world from my family I got an iPad for my elderly parents, one of whom had Alzheimers and couldn't cope with tech anymore and the other who was terrified of tech. 

    I setup the iPad to auto answer after however many rings so that I could Facetime them with them not having to worry about it. If they weren't there it was no big deal, and if they were in the middle of anything when I called it was simple for me to hang up. 

    Basically the iPad, Facetime and those little features meant I could be in contact with my parents, right up until the very end. I thanked him for this because that to me was *priceless* and I cannot imagine not having had it. 

    And he replied. It was unexpected - I had emailed just... needing to say thanks. So yeah, he definitely has form and I can say I 100% appreciated the reply I got.
    If you’re in contact with Tim, please ask him to implement rudimentary iPhone/AppleWatch 1.5 meter detection - to simplify & effectuate his  Corona strategy. Plus, to reinstate elementary feedback at [email protected]
    edited August 2020
  • Reply 18 of 36
    Hi John,

    I agree, it is outrageous that the watch isn’t included on the ARTG. I’ll come back to this point. 

    Those entries are only as sponsors for a product be included in the ARTG. That’s a reasonably easy thing to do and they are for ‘simple’ products, probably considered Class 1 or low risk. Gloves and masks to use outside their stores. 

    The watch is complicated software dealing with heart readings and as such is considered high risk by the TGA. 

    However, in my company’s dealings with the TGA, they are just a bunch of academics who do literature reviews of published papers. They are not experts in the medical field. That is why most of their decisions leave people scratching heads. 

    They will have instructed Apple to provide them with multiple peer reviewed studies of thousands of case reports and double blinded randomised studies. i.e. give people watches that don’t work as well as people with with watches that do. 

    Hundreds of anecdotal stories about lives saved aren’t good enough. Unfortunately...

    Being a high risk person for a-fib I need this feature. 



    jcbigears said:
    Just practicing my email:
    Dear Tim,
    Please make the ECG feature available to Australians.
    Your company has registered devices with the Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods already https://bit.ly/3h2tZnt
    The ARTG accepts evidence from overseas regulators including FDA, Health Canada, European Union and Japan https://bit.ly/3kObtkR
    Please?
    Thanking you,
    John

    jcbigears
  • Reply 19 of 36
    Oh, look, more of the new "a reader's letter to which Tim Cook responds" genre, more decoy-ducks. Innovation, my ass! 
    I have to inform you that - due to time constraints - the Apple Board has to select only subjects of appropriate nature for its peer-to-peer user discussions.
    You are advised to rephrase your point in a more complimentary manner
  • Reply 20 of 36
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 10,267member
    spice-boy said:
    Does expect the Apple Watch to tell anything while you are having a heart attack, just ask a good friend of mine. 

    Yes, we know.   So does Apple.
    That's why they broadcast very loudly and clearly that Apple Watch does not and cannot detect heart attack!  

    If you buy a Porsche, do you criticize the car for not carrying that load of topsoil you wanted?
    ... Please stop your silly attacks.
    king editor the grateDetnator
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