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Wrist-worn trackers can detect Covid before symptoms, study finds

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Health trackers worn on the wrist could be used to spot Covid-19 days before any symptoms appear, according to researchers.

Growing numbers of people worldwide use the devices to monitor changes in skin temperature, heart and breathing rates. Now a new study shows that this data could be combined with artificial intelligence (AI) to diagnose Covid-19 even before the first tell-tale signs of the disease appear.

“Wearable sensor technology can enable Covid-19 detection during the presymptomatic period,” the researchers concluded. The findings were published in the journal BMJ Open.

The discovery could lead to health trackers being adapted with AI to detect Covid-19 early, simply by spotting basic physiological changes. This could help provide an early warning system to users that they may be infected, which may in turn help to prevent the spread of the disease more widely.

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Source: The Guardian, 21 June 2022

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