When is getting exercise not a good idea? Working out could result in sudden death for people with a heart condition called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM). HCM, the most prevalent cause of sudden death of young athletes, is a genetic condition that is often asymptomatic and goes undetected, according to the CDC. About 1 person in 500 develops the thicker and stiffer than average heart muscle that characterizes HCM. You can develop HCM at any age, but people who develop HCM under age 40 have a greater risk of troublesome symptoms and complications. When heart muscles are enlarged, the heart holds less blood than normal. At the same time, the heart has to work harder to maintain adequate blood flow. HCM can also cause heart failure, atrial fibrillation, ventricular tachycardia, and ventricular fibrillation.

Researchers at the University of California San Francisco (UCSF) recently announced EXCITE-HCM, a six-month clinical study of the effects of exercise on patients who have HCM. The study will use Vivalink smart sensor patches to monitor cardiac electrical activity 24/7, tracking the ECGs and heart rate data of 70 HCM patients. UCSF will use Vivalink’s reusable ECG sensor to capture the data and the same company’s cloud-based Biometrics Data Platform to process and analyze the data.

Vivaiink’s biometric multi-sensor can also track heart rate variability and respiratory rate, We are interested in seeing the results of the UCSF study. Even before the clinical study begins, selecting Vivalink sensors and data analysis services for such an important study underscores both the usefulness and growing acceptance of digital health technologies.