Your watch is connected, which measures your physical activity, is able to detect the contamination to the coronavirus before the onset of symptoms?
Researchers are wondering if the accessories are connected could not be used to notify their carrier in the early days, the crucial period in which a person can be contagious without realizing it.
Last month, scientists from the institute of neuroscience, the Rockefeller of West Virginia University have stated that they have created a digital platform that is able to identify the COVID-19, with the ring connected to Oura beach and an artificial intelligence system.
Their application predicted the onset of symptoms (fever, cough, difficulty breathing) for up to three days before, and with 90% accuracy, they say.
The institute, Scripps Research has mobilized more than 30,000 people to participate in a study to determine how the accessories could identify asymptomatic carriers or “pre-symptomatic” of the disease.
The devices “have the potential to identify infectious people” despite the absence of symptoms, assures Jennifer Radin, one of the epidemiologists who conduct the research.
This institute has already demonstrated their potential in the prediction of the flu, according to a study published in January in the journal The Lancet.
Listen to the heart
The accessories are “subtle changes,” says Jennifer Radin, may be more accurate and convincing that the temperature controls. Because “40% of people who catch the COVID-19 does not have fever “, she says.
The devices control, for example, the resting heart rate, a good indicator of early infection. “We see changes (pulse rate) 4 days before someone has a fever,” details the researcher.
Eric Topol, the director of the Scripps institute, believes that the idea of using accessories is promising ” because 100 million Americans wear a watch or bracelet connected “.
But the study will not provide conclusive results as if many of the volunteers agree to participate.
The startup california Evidation attempts to develop an algorithm of early warning from the connected accessories worn by 300 people at very high risk of contracting the disease, with the financial assistance of the government and the Bill & Melinda Gates foundation.
This research should “identify more effectively when and where people catch the COVID-19, and potentially facilitate interventions in real time to limit the spread and evaluate the results,” says Luca Foschini, co-founder of Evidation.
A similar research is ongoing in Germany.
To stay at home?
The medicine is considering more and more the use of connected accessories in the diagnosis, because they can monitor the body temperature, heart and breathing rates, sleep, physical activity and other indicators.
Apple has launched studies to assess the ability of the Apple Watch to detect heart problems.
Fitbit, its competitor in the niche of the watch is connected, is involved in 500 different projects on cancer, diabetes, respiratory diseases and other health concerns.
“The watches and other accessories worn make at least 250 000 measures per day, which makes tracking devices that are very powerful,” notes Michael Snyder, of the school of medicine, Stanford.
The researchers of this university have announced in April of their participation in the research on this type of connected objects and various diseases, including COVID-19, in partnership with Scripps.
Michael Snyder hopes that, in the near future, the accessories connect the human with the warning signs of an infection or other ailments. “When you ask if you have allergies or if you are in the process of getting sick, these algorithms will be able to help you determine if you should stay home because your body is trying to fend off a virus,” he predicts.