Apple Watch Can Detect Symptoms Of Parkinson Thanks to New API
At Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference, it was mainly iOS 12 that was featured on-stage and managed to grab most of the attention, but the WatchOS software has seen some improvements as well. The company has released its Movement Disorder API for ResearchKit, which allows for the detection of Parkinson symptoms when using the Apple Watch.
The new Movement Disorder API allows developers for the Apple Watch to passively monitor symptoms of Parkinson on a constant basis, according to 9to5Mac. The new possibilities for the open-source ResearchKit framework will be available in WatchOS.
Specifically, the new API will be able to detect two symptoms related to Parkinson. Specific tremors, sudden shaking of a certain body port – usually the arm – while being active, is a good indicator of Parkinson. Recent devices with the necessary sensors running WatchOS will also be able to detect dyskinesia, which results in random and sudden movements.
Apparently, the Apple Watch would able to do diagnostic tests on a regular basis automatically via the Movement Disorder API, meaning that physical diagnostic tests would no longer be required. Even though there hasn’t been app announced with this functionality based on Parkinson, the possibilities are definitely there and it won’t take long before we start seeing health apps for Apple Watch that can detect Parkinson symptoms.
The Movement Disorder API is still in development and will be made available to app developers in the second developer’s release of WatchOS 5, which is compatible with the Apple Watch Series 1, 2 and 3.