Increased Physical Activity Improves Quality of Life in Patients with Congenital Heart Defects

February 15, 2024

Utilizing Garmin smartwatches, researchers have discovered that monitoring exercise ranges in cardiovascular sufferers may help result in higher self-reported high quality of life.

The German Coronary heart Centre in Munich, in collaboration with the Technical College of Munich (TUM), is on the forefront of cardiovascular care, notably on the subject of congenital coronary heart defects (CHDs). The 2 establishments have been utilizing Garmin watches to observe bodily exercise in sufferers for years, starting in pediatrics with the Garmin vívofit® jr. health tracker and transitioning extra lately to vívofit® 3 and vívosmart® 5 for adults.

Preliminary research performed with kids utilizing the Garmin vívofit jr. discovered that sporting snug, easy-to-use exercise trackers resulted in 88.1% of research individuals assembly the World Well being Group’s suggestion of 60 minutes of bodily exercise per day. This success led to additional analysis into how bodily exercise is said to the standard of life in kids with CHDs. Finally, kids who’re extra bodily energetic report higher total high quality of life. Each minute of moderate-to-vigorous bodily exercise was related to a 1% improve in reporting a greater high quality of life.

Main this analysis cost is Professor Jan Müller, whose analysis focus centres round vascular stiffness as a key cardiovascular danger issue, whereas underscoring the well being advantages of building bodily exercise early in life for total well-being.

“To make sure one of the best long-term outcomes and enhance sufferers’ high quality of life, it’s essential to undertake a holistic strategy to their well being,” says Müller. Research have proven that the majority sufferers with congenital coronary heart defects can interact in the identical beneficial exercise ranges as everybody else — a undeniable fact that, mixed with what the crew has realized concerning higher high quality of life, makes it very important to have the ability to monitor this exercise with Garmin smartwatches.

Beneath, Müller discusses his work with the German Coronary heart Centre and TUM, and the pivotal position Garmin performs in these analysis initiatives.

Q: What are congenital coronary heart defects?

Congenital coronary heart defects are coronary heart or close by blood vessel points current from beginning, usually rising throughout early being pregnant. They vary from gentle to life-threatening, probably needing surgical procedure and long-term care. Advances in medical know-how have boosted survival and high quality of life for people with CHDs, leading to a thriving CHD neighborhood. Given the continual nature of those circumstances, lifelong care is important, spotlighting the importance of ongoing analysis.

Q: What information from Garmin smartwatches helps inform your analysis?

When taking a look at bodily exercise in sufferers with CHD, the central parameter for our analysis is motion: steps and exercise minutes. In intervention research with motion parts, each coronary heart fee for coaching management and cardiac arrhythmia play an essential position with regard to affected person security. Lack of train is a vital, if not the primary, danger issue for cardiovascular ailments similar to coronary heart assaults and strokes. Health trackers and smartwatches show worthwhile, as a result of they’re cost-effective, sturdy and supply extra dependable information in comparison with questionnaires. That is notably useful to safe funding in scientific analysis, given their affordability and demonstrated effectiveness in quite a few research.

Q: Are you able to clarify the importance of motion information in relation to your work with CHD sufferers?

The information on motion is of central significance for us and the medical administration of sufferers with congenital coronary heart defects. That is as a result of life expectancy of sufferers enhancing massively and ailments of the cardiovascular system turning into related for this inhabitants. By means of large-scale research, we’re more and more extra in a position to perceive the subject of train and discover methods and means to extend the extent of train in a focused method.

Q: May you elaborate on the benefit you’ve recognized in utilizing Garmin health trackers?

A decisive benefit that has come from the research is the invention that people can participate in research on motion with out being stigmatised by cumbersome medical-grade accelerometers utilized in earlier research. As well as, the flexibility for people to attach their health trackers through Fitrockr, a number one platform answer for wearable well being information analysis, permits for the direct synchronisation of information in a cloud  — which is invaluable for additional scientific analysis.

We selected Garmin as a result of it was the one firm that provided a health tracker particularly for youngsters with the vívofit jr. and its subsequent fashions. These are additionally very well-received by kids and younger individuals, who put on them willingly. In earlier research on motion, the accelerometers we used weren’t engaging and had been worn across the waist like a belt. This was not solely awkward to make use of but it surely was usually tough for the individuals to clarify why they had been sporting the gadget with out addressing their sickness. An elegant and delicate health tracker shouldn’t be disagreeable on this respect and doesn’t stigmatise chronically sick sufferers whereas sporting it of their on a regular basis lives.

Q: Trying forward, what do you see as future developments within the analysis of sufferers with congenital coronary heart defects and bodily exercise?

We’ve now collected exercise information for greater than six years and know lots in regards to the basic train behaviour of our sufferers. Sooner or later, it will likely be essential to interrupt this down extra exactly: at what time of day is somebody energetic, and on which days. Solely then will or not it’s attainable, and this must also be our purpose, to extend exercise behaviour with personalised interventions. The technical prospects for this are solely out there now — not six years in the past once we began measuring.

May Garmin wearable know-how and the Garmin Well being Linked Ecosystem play a significant position in your subsequent well being or medical research? Contact us right this moment to seek out out extra.

Alternatively, if you wish to study extra about associated initiatives, go to for extra analysis initiatives with Garmin Well being. As well as, all data on analysis and medical trials could be discovered right here.

Garmin gadgets usually are not designed or supposed to observe or diagnose ailments or any medical circumstances. Discover data on metric accuracy right here.

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