Survey: Most U.S. consumers eager to use wearable devices to monitor their health

According to a recent survey, most U.S. consumers are eager to use wirelessly connected, wearable devices to monitor their health related to weight loss, yet slightly fewer than half who participated in the poll were concerned about their blood pressure.

The survey was conducted by A&D Medical, a subsidiary of Japanese medical device maker A&D, and included more than 2,000 participants. It found that 74% of men in the U.S. between the ages of 55 and 64 were concerned about their weight with 73% of women aged 18 to 34 trailing close behind on watching the scales.

About half (48%) of those surveyed worried about being "overweight" but just 26% of the poll participants gave much thought to their risk of diabetes, MedCity News reported. Only 19% said they were concerned about being unattractive due to weight.

Though monitoring weight ranked high, slightly less than half (48%) said they were concerned about blood pressure, with one in four wanting to monitor for stroke or hypertension, and more than one in five expressing concern about having a heart attack.

Still, the respondents said, they were supportive of using wearable devices to measure and track health vitals and then share the collected information with their doctors or other healthcare professionals.

Blood pressure was the most popular vital sign participants wanted to monitor (37%), followed by weight (33%), chronic conditions like hypertension and diabetes (25%), sleep (23%), exercise (22%), diet (19%), and vision (18%).

The number of wearable and connected devices exploded last year, and is poised to grow even bigger as more sophisticated sensors that will enable continuous monitoring are developed.

"With the next wave, there will be deeper measurement in the body," Ken Drazan, the head of Johnson & Johnson's ($JNJ) Innovation Center in California, told FierceMedicalDevices in October. "This can be delivered at very low cost, with comfort for the patient and value for the consumer in the aesthetics. It also provides a decision support system that is valuable to the healthcare system."

Still, the technology and all the private medical information it captures that can be shared has U.S. regulators scrambling to make sure consumers' privacy isn't compromised.

- check out the MedCity article

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