Background: Mobile devices are gaining a rising number of users in all countries around the globe. Novel solutions to diagnose patients with out-of-hospital onset of arrhythmic symptoms can be easily used to record such events, but the effectiveness of these devices remain unknown.
Methods: In a group of 100 consecutive patients of an academic cardiology care center (mean age 68 ± 14.2 years, males: 66%) a standard 12-lead electrocardiogram (ECG) and a Kardia Mobile (KM) record were registered. Both versions were assessed by three independant groups of physicians.
Results: The analysis of comparisons for standard ECG and KM records showed that the latter is of lower quality (p < 0.001). It was non-inferior for detection of atrial fibrillation and atrial flutter, showed weaker rhythm detection in pacemaker stimulation (p = 0.008), and was superior in sinus rhythm detection (p =0.02), though. The sensitivity of KM to detect pathological Q-wave was low compared to specificity (20.6% vs. 93.7%, respectively, p < 0.001). Basic intervals measured by the KM device, namely PQ, RR, and QT were significantly different (shorter) than those observed in the standard ECG method (160 ms vs. 180 ms [p < 0.001], 853 ms vs. 880 ms [p =0.03] and 393 ms vs. 400 ms [p < 0.001], respectively).
Conclusions: Initial and indicative value of atrial fibrillation and atrial flutter detection in KM is comparable to results achieved in standard ECG. KM was superior in detection of sinus rhythm than eye-ball evaluation of 12-lead ECG. Though, the PQ and QT intervals were shorter in KM as compared to 12-lead ECG. Clinical value needs to be verified in large studies, though.
Keywords: arrhythmia; atrial fibrillation; electrocardiogram; mobile; telemedicine.