Scientists have developed a new smartphone app that can help identify patients who are at risk of dying from a heart attack. The app can help doctors quickly calculate if a cardiac patient could suffer a heart attack within the next three years and gauge the severity of their condition. Developed by Edinburgh University and Massachusetts University, the app can be used to work out which treatments are most suitable for the patient.
The app analyses a patient's heart rate, blood pressure, kidney function, severity of original attack and history of heart failure to get an accurate assessment of the potential risk of repeat heart attack and the type of treatment required, 'The Times' reported.
"Before we developed the app, this kind of diagnosis could only be done in a hospital. Now with the app, a paramedic can do it outside a hospital," said Professor Keith Fox, British Heart Foundation Professor of Cardiology at Edinburgh University, who led work on developing the app.
"One in five patients is likely to die within five years of their initial heart attack, so identifying those most at risk of a repeat heart attack means we can better tailor treatments to the individual and prevent further attacks. We can also avoid unnecessary aggressive treatments for those less at risk," Fox said.
The app draws upon data from the Global Registry of Coronary Events (GRACE). It includes details of more than 100,000 heart attack patients in 14 countries over ten years, including 3,700 patients in Scotland and Belgium over a five-year period. A paper on the technology was presented at the European Society of Cardiology Congress in Amsterdam.
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