Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the number one cause of death globally, according to the World Health Organisation, with an estimated 17.5million deaths from CVD in 2012. The CDC estimates that in the US alone, around 200,000 CVD deaths are preventable through lifestyle change. Healthcare apps are already changing the way people assess and monitor their health, and as public awareness of CVD grows, more people are likely to take an interest in their cardiac health.
Ballistocardiography (BCG) takes advantage from the fact that heart is both a mechanical organ as well as electrical. BCG measures the physical movement of the chest due to the heart beating rather than electrical signals so it does not require gel to be applied and needs fewer sensors (sometimes only one) placed above the heart. Modern smartphones typically contain accelerometers capable of measuring chest movement, and this app utilises this capability, allowing a smartphone to become a portable BCG, capable of being used by anyone without requiring a trip to the GP or hospital.
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