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Fitness or activity trackers are devices with special sensors that can monitor your movement. Often referred to as “wearables,” these devices are typically worn around the wrist as a bracelet or embedded in a mobile phone or wristwatch. They can measure footsteps taken, distance traveled, type of movement (walk, run, or jog), and quality and duration of sleep. Some wearables have additional sensors to monitor heart rate, blood pressure, blood oxygen levels, and perspiration. Data from wearables can be transferred to a smartphone, computer, database, or website. Connected smartphones and wearables can alarm or vibrate to encourage behaviors, such as exercise or sleep. As wearable technology matures, these devices will likely cost less, and it may become easier to share data from them with your health care professional, clinic, or hospital.
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Kaiser DW, Harrington RA, Turakhia MP. Wearable Fitness Trackers and Heart Disease. JAMA Cardiol. 2016;1(2):239. doi:10.1001/jamacardio.2016.0354
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