A couple of weeks ago, Fitbit received clearance from the FDA for their new PPG (photoplethysmography) algorithm to identify atrial fibrillation (AFib). They told us at the time that this new feature would begin rolling out over the coming weeks, without a specific date. Today they’ve given us the specific date – rollout begins now.
Fitbit says that their new PPG AFib algorithm “can passively assess your heart rhythm in the background while you’re still or asleep,” looking to identify an irregular heart rhythm. Should it notice anything off, the new Irregular Heart Rhythm Notifications will ping you within the app (see below) and then allow you to contact your health provider to further assess.
You may be wondering about how this new PPG algorithm fits in with the Fitbit ECG app, and well, it’s there to work alongside it in a more active fashion. Through the ECG app, you can spot-check for possible AFib, while this new PPG algorithm allows for a more long-term assessment that may help identify an undetected AFib.
Again, this feature is rolling out now.
For more on the FDA approval of this new Fitbit feature, check out this blog post from a couple of weeks back.