A look at WIWE, a clinical-grade electrocardiogram (ECG) monitor that is about the size of a business card

WIWE

8.3

DESIGN

8.0/10

EASE OF USE

8.5/10

APPLICATION OF THE INFORMATION

8.5/10

MOTIVATION

8.0/10

PROS

  • Simple in its operation
  • Clinical grade ECG (98.7 percent accuracy)
  • ECG analysis that is more in-depth than that of competitors
  • Readings of the SpO2 that are portable and lightweight

CONS

  • Readings from pricey SpO2 monitors won’t register every time.

Diseases of the heart are among the leading causes of death for both men and women. More than 600,000 people lose their lives to it every year in the United States; this accounts for one in every four deaths.

ECGs are frequently used by medical professionals as diagnostic tools and monitoring tools for illnesses that affect the heart. It displays the electrical activity as a moving line with peaks and dips all along its length. This information can be put to use to diagnose potentially life-threatening diseases such as arrhythmias, heart defects, heat inflammation, cardiac arrest, inadequate blood flow, coronary artery disease, and a variety of other conditions.

Wearable ECGs are still in the very early stages of development, but the sector is expanding at a rapid pace. In 2018, Apple made a significant advance toward its goal of shaping the future of medicine by introducing the ECG capability of its Series 4 watch. Later on in 2019, Withings intends to release an ECG activity watch in addition to their blood pressure monitor. However, there are alternative choices available to you.

One of these comes from Sanatmetal, a company that is owned by Hungarians and has been providing revolutionary gadgets and implants to physicians since 1967. Sanatmetal was founded in 1967. I’ve had the opportunity to put their portable ECG monitor, WIWE, through its paces. After only one minute, the company claims it can produce results that are of clinical quality. What I concluded from it is as follows:

Design

We may be carried about easily and are not heavy. It is about the size of a business card but is a little bit thicker, and it can easily be carried in a bag or pocket. It’s possible that you can even fit it in your wallet if you try!

The only physical button on the gadget is located at the top right corner, and it serves the purpose of turning the device on and off. The charging wire is plugged in at the bottom right edge of the device. The opposite end of the charging cable is designed to be inserted into a common USB port.

When you turn on WIWE, you will see two different groups of lights. The first component is a series of five very small LEDs that display the current charge level of the battery. The second component is a big light in the shape of a W that is placed in the gap between the electrodes. This serves as a progress bar to indicate how much time is still needed to finish a measurement and whether or not the reading was accurate.

WIWE is similar to other ECG monitors in that it functions by making contact with the user’s skin. It is equipped with two electrodes, each of which is about the size of a dime. When you are taking a reading, you are supposed to place your thumbs or index fingers on each one of them, and then sit steady until the measurement is finished.

The apparatus is utilized to capture electrocardiograms using a single channel (ECG). It takes sixty seconds for it to spit out information that is clinical-grade on your heart rhythm and any probable deviation from the normal. WIWE is distinguished from other devices of this kind by its high level of accuracy.

In clinical studies, the algorithm’s ECG accuracy was measured against 10,000 different samples, and it attained a 98.7 percent success rate. WIWE is able to identify the risk of both atrial fibrillation-related stroke as well as sudden cardiac arrest. And the regulatory authority of the EU has given its blessing for it to proceed in this manner (CE mark in the medical device category).

The left electrode also has a SpO2 sensor, which can be used to determine the amount of oxygen that is present in the blood. If you want to use it as a pedometer, there is even an accelerometer built into the device for you to use. This is for those individuals who do not already own a fitness tracker or smartwatch and do not wish to use their smartphone to count steps. It can also be used by those individuals who already own a fitness tracker or smartwatch.

Features

WIWE requires little effort to set up. You’ll need to have a mobile device that runs on either iOS or Android. You will need to download the associated app, provide your information, and then allow it to pair with WIWE using Bluetooth. I had no problems at all with any part of the procedure, and it was done in a matter of minutes. You are also able to make recordings in complete secrecy if you so choose.

The device’s operation is as simple as it sounds. Launch the application on your smartphone, and then head to the dashboard. You will be given four options to select from, which are New Recording, Profile, Information, and Settings, respectively. The first of these will lead you to the screen where you can pair your Bluetooth device. The app will automatically switch to the pre-recording screen as soon as WIWE is turned on.

Now, press your thumbs against the two sensors while grasping the rear of the smartphone with your index fingers and ensuring that none of your other fingers are touching the gadget. An additional option is to lay WIWE out on a level surface and then use your index fingers to press down on the electrodes. When faced with a choice between these two alternatives, I almost always went with the first one.

You will need to maintain this position for around ten seconds in order for the app to verify that you are holding WIWE in the appropriate manner. In that case, it will prompt you to change it again. If there are no major problems, then it will move on to the next reading. After this point, you will begin to see a line of peaks and troughs that represents your ECG curve scrolling across the display of the app in real time. You’ll also be able to keep track of your shifting pulse in the top right corner, right next to the display of your SpO2 level. As was previously noted, the duration of the measurement is one minute.

The display shows a portion of the recording for the measurement that was performed.

When the software prompts you to release the sensors, do so, and it will proceed to the screen where you can evaluate your performance. At this point, you will receive quick feedback on the data that has been gathered.

The app will explain, in language that is easy to understand, whether or not your ECG parameters fall within the normal range, whether or not there are any signs of arrhythmia, and whether or not the ventricular depolarization heterogeneity, which refers to the electrical instability of cardiac muscle cells, is normal.

You will be able to tell at a glance whether there is anything about which you should be concerned because each category is represented by a circle that is either green, yellow, or red. During the last week, I must have carried out more than thirty readings, and most of the time, the outcomes fell within the parameters of what is considered normal. My VH levels did show a few yellow circles, which represents a slight departure from the norm. There is no need for alarm, but this is something that should be monitored closely.

Additionally, your SpO2 level and heart rate are displayed on the evaluation screen. My heart rate was frequently in the 50s, and my SpO2 level ranged from 96 to 99 percent at all times.

If you select the “details” tab, you will be directed to a very in-depth study of the parameters of your electrocardiogram (ECG), which will include the QRS, QTc, and PQ. Even with the extensive explanations provided on the help screen, I believe that your physician or cardiologist will find this portion of the analysis to be the most intriguing. This is because the average person may have difficulty understanding medical terminology.

You are also able to review the whole ECG recording in this section. Each measurement requires approximately 700 kilobytes of storage space, and the options screen allows a user to determine how much space will be dedicated to these recordings. In addition, users have the ability to add commentary to each measurement, which can include symptoms, whether or not medicine was taken, and other information. After that, the individual can choose to share the recording with their loved ones or with a medical expert by either downloading the recording as a PDF or emailing it to the recipient of their choice.

I wanted to make a movie to show how simple it is to take a reading, so here it is!

The Hungarian group recommends that you make recordings at least three times a week. If your results are off or if you suffer from symptoms such as a racing heartbeat, fluttering in the chest, or difficulty breathing, you should do this more frequently and talk to your doctor about it.

Additionally, the app includes a notebook for your health. This displays a chronology of all of your readings in chronological order. Simply clicking on any measurement gives you access to all the data that pertains to it in greater detail.

It’s possible that at this point you’re wondering whether or not there is a distinction between WIWE and other ECG wearables now available on the market, such as the Apple Watch Series 4 and Alivecor. The only other things that these three ECGs have in common is that they are all one-lead ECGs and that they check for atrial fibrillation, but that is pretty much where the similarities end.

WIWE takes things a step further by performing an ECG wave analysis that is more detailed and by offering results that are accurate to 98.7 percent. It monitors the ventricular activities as well as the atrial activities, and if it detects any abnormalities in the ventricular sector, it is able to provide a warning if there are any early indicators that could lead to an unexpected cardiac arrest. Even the detection of a-fib is carried out with greater precision. In addition to this, WIWE analyzes the “P” wave of your readings, which enables it to produce ECG-specific characteristics such as QRS, QTc, and PQ. Both professionals and laypeople who have done their research can benefit from the information presented here.

In conclusion, the ergonomic configuration of the WIWE is more conducive to collecting accurate measurements. This is in contrast to the Apple Watch Series 4, which may offer greater convenience due to the fact that you are wearing it the majority of the time. It is recommended that, instead of resting your finger on a watch that is worn on the wrist, you keep your thumbs or index fingers on the electrodes of a device that can be placed on a flat surface or held in both hands. This will produce more accurate results.

Santametal is not going to stop here; in the future, there will be further features added to the platform. WIWE will be connected to a cloud system in order to provide remote monitoring thanks to the collaborative efforts of this organization and Harvard Medical School in the United States. The goal is to employ this method in order to forecast impending heart attacks a few days in advance.

Pfizer Pharmaceutical and the Hungarian Society of Cardiology have collaborated over the past several weeks to finance the distribution of 160 WIWE devices to cardiology centers in Hungary. These devices may identify potentially life-threatening arrhythmias, including atrial fibrillation. There are currently 60 of these in use, with the remaining 100 scheduled to be utilized within the next few months.

The final decision

WIWE provides a straightforward and hassle-free method for you to monitor and maintain your cardiovascular health. It goes farther than the majority of other similar devices available on the market in the sense that it provides a more complete analysis of your electrocardiogram (ECG), including anomalies in the ventricular region, as opposed to focusing solely on the activities of the atrium. Furthermore, it achieves a 98.7 percent accuracy rate.

This makes it possible for you to check for the possibility of arrhythmias, as well as the risks of stroke and sudden cardiac arrest, without having to leave the convenience of your own home. It is possible that it will provide you with advanced notice that a visit to your primary care physician is required. In addition, there are some additional features, such as the capability to count steps and measure SpO2 levels.

In general, I found that WIWE lived up to its billing and performed as expected. Given that it costs €289 to purchase one of these from mywiwe.com, my guess is that the vast majority of customers won’t do so on a whim. However, if you already have a disease that has been diagnosed or if you have reason to be concerned about your heart health, it may turn out to be an investment that saves your life.

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