FDA approves AI stethoscope technology capable of identifying heart failure

Over 6 million Americans are living with heart failure, while the global number of people with heart failure and reduced ejection fraction is over 11 million, as reported in a 2020 study by the American Medical Association. This highlights the need for more accurate and efficient methods to detect heart failure early on.

Traditional diagnostic tools such as stethoscopes and electrocardiograms (ECGs) have been in use for decades, but they can sometimes require further tests such as CT or MRI scans for a definitive diagnosis. However, a new artificial intelligence (AI) technology developed by Mayo Clinic and Eko Health has recently been FDA-cleared to help detect heart failure in just seconds.

The AI program was trained on recordings from over 100,000 patients to interpret heart activity, allowing it to quickly assess a person’s heart strength and detect early signs of heart failure with low ejection fraction in just seconds. This breakthrough technology can help identify heart issues that might otherwise go undetected, leading to earlier intervention and better outcomes for patients.

Connor Landgraf, CEO of Eko Health, has a personal and professional interest in using AI to enhance medical care. His family’s history of pulmonary disease motivated him to explore better technologies for identifying early signs of illness. He believes that this AI-enhanced stethoscope can revolutionize the way doctors diagnose and treat patients with heart failure.

Dr. Paul Friedman, a cardiologist at Mayo Clinic, emphasizes the importance of early detection for heart failure, which can lead to serious complications if left untreated. The AI-enhanced stethoscope is now available for $429 with a monthly subscription and can be used by healthcare professionals or at home by patients themselves. This innovative technology has the potential to revolutionize the way we diagnose and treat heart disease in the future.

By Samantha Johnson

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