With a selfie, doctors could know if they have heart problems: this is how this innovation would work

As the use of smartphones and social networks became more popular, thousands of people around the world began to share hundreds of ‘selfies’ (or selfies). For this reason, smartphones have had a notable evolution in their camera technology in order to offer higher quality images for users who like to publish their photos on digital platforms.

However, a couple of years ago an investigation published by the European Society of Cardiology was revealed that raises the use of selfies as a resource to detect abnormalities in the coronary arteries.

According to the authors of the scientific work, there is the possibility of using an algorithm, powered by deep learning artificial intelligence, which is capable of finding heart problems in a person by analyzing four photographs of their face.

As the research explains, there are a number of facial features that could be related to heart disease or problems, such as certain folds in the earlobe or tiny deposits of fat on the skin. Because many of these features are not noticeable to the naked eye, a doctor might miss them and thus fail to diagnose possible heart disease.

So the incorporation of this artificial intelligence system for the analysis of selfies would represent a tool that could help diagnose heart problems with greater precision.

Experts indicate that a tachycardia is a heart rate of more than 100 beats per minute. Photo: Getty Images. – Photo: Photo: Getty Images.

How a selfie could indicate if a person has heart disease?

Initially, a team of scientists from the Institute for Brain and Cognition in the Department of Automation at Tsinghua University in China developed a software that has the ability to check the coronary arteries of a patient through four photographs of his face.

Subsequently, a series of tests were carried out to refine the algorithm, which had a success rate of more than 50% by accurately recognizing the heart problems of the group of people who participated in the test of this system.

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However, the creators of this technology at the time recognized that their system still needs to be fine-tuned to achieve 100% accuracy, but this innovation provides the fundamental building blocks for creation of different platforms that use facial analysis as a means of diagnosis of different types of diseases.

Therefore, in the near future, patients could take several selfies and send them to their doctor, so that the specialist can carry out an analysis using that technology and thus establishing that person requires more specialized examinations to treat a heart disease or other ailment.

broken heart syndrome
Broken Heart Syndrome is a temporary heart condition that is often triggered by stressful situations and extreme emotions. – Photo: Getty Images

How to measure your heart rate with your cell phone and without depending on a watch?

Currently, some people are unaware that a smartphone can be used as a resource to monitor your heart rate in a simple way and with just investing a couple of seconds in it.

It should be noted that the way to use this resource will depend on the design of the phone, since in certain cases the measurement will be carried out through the flash of the camera system or the sensor that recognizes the user’s fingerprint.

Smartphones can be used to measure heart rate.
Smartphones can be used to measure heart rate. – Photo: Getty Images

With this situation clear, the first requirement to be able to measure the heart rate with a cell phone is to download an application that has this function. Currently, on Google Play there is a wide range of apps that make it possible to incorporate the tool in smartphones that use Android, the operating system for mobile devices.

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An example of this is the Welltory app, a service designed to measure the heart rate and which has a good rating among Android phone users.

Once said application has been downloaded and installed on the user’s device, he will have to generate a record by entering data such as age, weight, gender and other information. In addition, you will have to set whether the measurement will be made by the fingerprint sensor or the flash light of the equipment.

After executing the configuration, a red button will appear in the central part of the screen that must be pressed to start the heart rate monitoring process. Later, it is necessary to put the index finger on the fingerprint reader or on the flash of the main camera of the equipment.

Then, you will have to wait a few seconds and the result of the measurement on the user’s pulse will appear on the screen. In fact, the application will also generate a report with details about the user’s pulse and other useful data.

However, it is important to specify that these applications do not offer results with one hundred percent accuracy. In the event that a much more accurate measurement is required, it is advisable to go to devices specially designed to monitor vital signs with precision, such as smart watches from Samsung, Xiaomi, Huawei, Garmin or the Apple Watch, since they are equipment that has specialized sensors to monitor the user’s heart rate.

Sport, health, heart rate, sports watch, jogging, running.  Beats, heart.
Young woman checking sport watch that measures heart rate and performance after running. – Photo: Getty Images/iStockphoto

In the same way, it is essential to always go to a doctor to perform the corresponding tests to prevent any heart problem.

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