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Most doctors don't like fitness trackers for medical monitoring

Most doctors don't like fitness trackers for medical monitoring

It seems that nowadays if we want to lead a healthy lifestyle it is essential to monitor our sports activities, our sleep cycles, the kilometers we've traveled... All through an application on your smartphone or your smartwatch. Now, a study shows that most US doctors are not very much in favor of using wearable tech data.

We have become accustomed to making fitness bands and smartwatches part of our lives. One of the reasons is to monitor our health, since they can measure the hours we sleep, the steps we walk during the day or the calories we eat or burn. But what do health specialists recommend?

AndroidPIT Xaomi Mi Band 3 9407Xiaomi Mi Band 3, one of the best selling wearables. / © AndroidPIT by Irina Efremova

Most doctors do not recommend its use

According to a study carried out by Kantar in the United States, less than 30% of the doctors consulted say they have recommended general health and wellness applications or the use of wearable medical monitoring or measurement devices connected to the Internet.

The reasons for this mistrust are not clear. Maybe it's just a lack of knowledge since it seems that all kinds of help would be welcome, and if your smartwatch warns you that it's time to get up from the sofa and you listen to it, that's better than nothing, right?

On the other hand, it is true that we should not blindly entrust our health to a wearable. Of course, it's always best to consult a doctor or specialist before following your smartwatch's advice to the letter. This "work intrusion" may be another reason why many doctors do not advise their patients to use these devices. Instead, they would recommend these devices to patients with chronic diseases.

If we look at the users' side, the results are totally different. More than 50% of respondents have a positive opinion about these devices, despite the fact that 60% of them are unfamiliar with their use.

If we analyze health-related applications in the US, the most used are those related to monitoring activities (such as Runtastic or Runkeeper), followed by calorie counters, sleep cycle data and those apps that teach us healthy recipes or how to follow a diet.

fitness usa
Nearly 10% of the U.S. population uses apps to control their activity. / © Kantar

Do you also trust your wearable to keep an eye on your health? Or do you think we're going crazy with so much obsession about controlling everything?

Source: Kantar

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  • storm 10 months ago Link to comment

    The data quality is suspect. The tool is not to medical specs, it's collection method is not to medical specs. They can't review that it was applied properly to work right. All the variables controlled for when the doctor orders the data collection are not present. Helath trackers are not rigorous quality data, only anecdotal.

    When you understand science, the medical skepticism is well placed.