Cardiograph Celebrates Its First Anniversary on the App Store

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A humble endeavor that ended up saving lives

Cardiograph has evolved into a complete solution for tracking heart fitness.

One year ago on this day Cardiograph was released on the Apple App Store. It wasn’t the first app of its kind -- there were already a few well-established apps for measuring heart rate with an iPhone. But over the course of the last twelve months, Cardiograph has evolved into a complete solution for tracking heart fitness.

In it’s simplest form, Cardiograph is an app that measures a person's pulse in beats per minute. The user simply touches the iPhone or iPad’s camera with the tip of their finger, and a couple of seconds later they see every beat displayed onscreen on a rolling piece of paper, reminiscent of an actual ECG printout. What sets this app apart from all the others however is that it does so much more.

Each measurement they take can be saved to a personal history, along with the location at which it was taken and a small note to provide some context. The same copy of the app can be used to store detailed history for any number of people, each with their own separate profile. And if Cardiograph is installed on multiple devices -- say an iPhone and an iPad -- all measurements and profiles are synced in real-time via iCloud. That, in addition to features like printing measurements directly from the app or sending them via e-mail, the comprehensive user manual and the intuitive authentic design, make it an unparalleled solution for monitoring heart conditions.

User feedback has been overwhelmingly positive. Cardiograph has been downloaded more than 3.5 million times (updates excluded) and is used to track millions of unique measurements each month. It has a rating of 4.5 out of 5, and some of the stories shared by people using the app are extraordinarily heartwarming. Such is the experience Bob Spadafora, who one day felt something wasn’t right, used to Cardiograph to take a measurement, and worried by the result went for an examination that lead to him being hospitalized.

“I installed Cardiograph a month ago and this week it may have saved my life when I went into a serious afib. [Cardiograph] was key to understanding what was going on and help the doctors understand too. As lay in my hospital bed and not able to see the $100k heart monitor keeping track via electric lead, I was able to confirm to the doctor what the monitor was reading via the app.”

Although it’s far from being an actual medical device, Cardiograph’s accuracy has attracted the attention of medical professionals. Prof. Kurt Laederach from the University of Bern, Switzerland used Cardiograph to conduct a heart rate variability study sponsored by the Swiss National Science Foundation. Dr. Westby G. Fisher praised Cardiograph as a tool that can empower patients and facilitate communication.

“Was it perfect? No it wasn’t. It was NOT an ECG after all. Was it helpful in this case? Absolutely. [The patient] just saved herself and the health care system a ton of money. Welcome, my friends, to the era of patient-empowered, individualized medicine and a whole new era of patient care.”

Not many apps can proudly say they’ve improved the lives of their users, but Cardiograph is certainly one of them. An amazing feat for something that a person can download to their phone.

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Vladimir Georgiev
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