Thanks to a new Apple Watch app being tested by orthopedics company Zimmer Biomet, orthopedic surgeons in the U.S. will soon be able to use Apple’s smart wearable for monitoring patients due to have hip or knee replacements.
According to Reuters, patients waiting for or recovering from hip and knee replacement surgery will be able to submit basic health data directly from their Apple Watches including heart rate, number of steps taken and standing hours.
The stats will be received by surgeons in four hospitals and over a dozen other medical facilities across Massachusetts, California, Colorado, and Michigan. The data will allow surgeons and their teams to assess how well patients are following prescribed physiotherapy or regimes ahead of surgery or recovering afterward.
The app could also help doctors monitor the health of their patients who prefer to stay at home after surgery.
“When you look at what patients have to do when they undergo hip and knee replacement, in some cases, they have very low support or guidance before and after surgery, which creates a lot of unnecessary fear and anxiety,” Zimmer Biomet executive Dan Williamson said.
“We believe this is going to create a new ecosystem in orthopedics that ultimately drives less anxiety in patients and more visibility from the surgeon.”
Over a million knee and hip replacements occur every year in the U.S. making them two of the most common surgeries Americans undergo.