April 20, 2024 4:40 am
FDA Approves AI Stethoscope Technology Capable of Detecting Heart Failure

In the field of medicine, heart failure is a common condition that affects millions of people worldwide. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), over 6 million Americans suffer from heart failure. This number is even higher globally, with more than 11 million people suffering from heart failure with reduced ejection fraction, a condition characterized by a weak heart pump.

Recently, a new FDA-cleared artificial intelligence technology developed by Mayo Clinic and Eko Health has been introduced to quickly detect signs of heart failure in just seconds. The stethoscope, an instrument that has been in use since 1816, has undergone an AI transformation. Doctors utilize the stethoscope to listen to the sounds of the heart and lungs, aiding in diagnosing various conditions. However, additional tests such as CT or MRI scans are often required for a definitive diagnosis. Electrocardiograms (ECGs), which measure the heart’s electrical activity, are commonly used by physicians for further evaluation.

The AI program was trained using over 100,000 patient recordings to interpret heart activity accurately. The technology is able to quickly assess an individual’s heart strength within fraction of time, detecting early signs of heart failure with low ejection fraction that are often challenging to identify. Dr. Paul Friedman, a cardiac electrophysiologist and cardiologist at the Mayo Clinic, stressed the significance of early detection for this potentially life-threatening condition.

Lindsey Theis of Scripps News spoke with Connor Landgraf, CEO of Eko Health, who underscored the importance of utilizing technology like AI to enhance patient care, especially in the early detection of illnesses. The cost of the AI-enhanced stethoscope is $429 along with a monthly subscription fee. The advancement of AI technology continues to revolutionize various aspects of healthcare

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