South Korea-based health care company, Sky Labs has released results from its latest study on cuffless blood pressure measurement.

The study implemented photoplethysmography (PPG) a non-invasive, low-cost optical technique used to detect volumetric changes in blood in peripheral circulation and focused on deep learning algorithms for big data analytics.

The paper was published in Nature Scientific Reports and included 4,185 test subjects. The subjects were split into three groups, 70% for training 20% for validating and 10% for testing.

Despite the number of participants, the study would have benefited from a larger test group according to the report. A greater subject pool would have given the test more variations of blood pressures to work with, improving the accuracy of PPG-based blood pressure monitoring. Other in-house-data worked with a fewer than 1000 subjects.

The consortium of data collected allowed the algorithm to learn various PPG patterns to help optimise blood pressure measurement technologies. The algorithm was then better suited for general users with highly erratic blood pressure. 

The ring medical device, CART-I BP, from Sky Labs will offer 24/7 blood pressure monitoring helping to accurately monitor hypertension, morning surge, and blood pressure variability. In March, the device received clearance from the Korean Ministry of Food and Drug Safety (MFDS) and is expected to be on the market by the end of 2023.

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By GlobalData

Following the publication of the paper Sky Labs, CEO, Jack Lee said the device has high potential to improve hypertension awareness, treatment, and management, enabling early prediction of cardiovascular events. “Hopefully, this research will take us a step closer towards providing improved BP management for the approximately 1.28 billion individuals suffering from hypertension around the world,” said Lee.

In 2019, the wearable tech market was worth nearly $27 billion and is likely to grow to $64 billion by 2024, according to GlobalData forecasts, growing at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 19%.

Despite this predicted growth, medical professionals are sceptical of the wearable devices functionality and effectiveness in the medical industry.