Study compares Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 to medical-grade equipment

Modern smartwatches can take on full-blown medical tools, claims a new research, published in the Sleep Health Journal. The researchers focused on the SpO2 capabilities of the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4, and compared them to medical-grade equipment when measuring obstructive sleep apnea.

According to the results, the Galaxy Watch 4 complies with the FDA and ISO standards, and the researchers wrote in the paper that “The GW4 had an overall RMSE (root mean squared error) of 2.3% and negligible bias of -0.2%. A Bland-Altman density plot showed good agreement between the GW4 and the reference pulse oximeter.”

In layman’s terms, the measurements taken with the Galaxy Watch 4 were very close to the reference medical tool the researchers were using.

Ninety-seven adults with sleep disturbances were enrolled in the study, and seven medical professionals conducted the testing. Another key finding was that wearing the Galaxy Watch 4 tight above the wrist bone improved the accuracy of the SpO2 measurements.

Now, it’s worth mentioning that the whole study was conducted at Samsung Medical Center, it was also appointed by the Korean company, and Samsung paid for the whole thing. Six of the seven medical specialists conducting the study were also affiliated with Samsung.With all that being said, pulse oximetry and the sensors in modern wearables are considered pretty accurate, mainly because of the method they use to evaluate the oxygen in the blood. It’s called reflectance oximetry and measures arterial oxygen saturation based on the light absorption properties of blood.

Take these results with a healthy grain of salt but there’s no reason not to use your Galaxy Watch (or other similar device) to get a reference point for your blood oxygen levels, especially during sleep. Sleep apnea is a very common condition, affecting between 9 and 38% of the population, and a proper diagnosis could save you a lot of troubles.

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Source: phonearena.com

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