Wearable electrocardiogram maker iRhythm Technologies has begun working with Verily Life Sciences to develop ways to better screen, diagnose and manage patients living with so-called “silent” atrial fibrillation.
IRhythm estimates that, of the patients who suffer a stroke due to afib, about 1 in 5 were previously unaware of their heart rhythm disorder. The company says more than 10 million people in the U.S. may be at high risk for the condition, with about one-third going undiagnosed.
Afib is also associated with higher stroke risks and more severe cases when they do occur as well as other risk factors such as high blood pressure, diabetes and sleep apnea. To develop a kind of early warning system, iRhythm and Verily aim to build solutions to help identify asymptomatic, high-risk patients in underserved populations before a major cardiac event happens.
“Verily’s patient-centric approach to disease management and advanced hardware capabilities will prove critical in providing patients and providers with the tools needed to increase the efficiency of heart healthcare,” Kevin King, iRhythm president and CEO, said in a statement.
For access to Verily’s health data analytics technologies, iRhythm will pay Verily $5 million upfront, and the devicemaker has committed to as much as $12.75 million in development and regulatory milestone payments. Meanwhile, iRhythm will supply its 14-day wearable biosensor devices as well as its experience in artificial intelligence-based arrhythmia diagnosis.
“With the high prevalence of cardiovascular-related health issues, we have an opportunity to not only improve how we diagnose, manage and monitor conditions like atrial fibrillation, but also develop patient-centric solutions that could ultimately prevent serious cardiac events,” said Verily’s chief medical and scientific officer Jessica Mega.