It is now well accepted among the medical community that personal EKG monitors are helpful devices to check for heart rhythm anomalies or detect potential atrial fibrillations (Afib). Some EKG home devices or even smartwatches like the Apple Watch or the Galaxy Watch 3 are even FDA cleared for detecting Afibs.
Two surface electrodes of opposite polarity or one positive surface electrode and a reference point will constitute one lead. It is assumed that the more leads, the more precise the detection of potential cardiac anomalies. Clinical electrocardiograms use 12 leads. Somehow, even one lead recording is enough to detect heart rhythm anomalies.
This article will check on the characteristics and pros and cons of two of the most widely used EKG monitors to use at home: the Kardia Mobile and the Wellue DuoEK.
Comfort of use
The Kardia Mobile does not require gels, patches, or wires to monitor your heart. You need to place your fingers on the sensors to start the analysis. The Kardia Mobile is not a fitness device but more a clinical one. Check our full review of the AliveCor KardiaMobile-6L.
The Wellue DuoEK can be used either independently or using the provided chest strap that offers maximum comfort when wearing the portable ECG heart tracker while doing your daily activities. It’s advisable not to wear the ECG heart rate monitor if you’re engaging in any strenuous activities or walking fast, or making a lot of quick movements as the signal quality may suffer.
Duo EK by Wellue
Price when reviewed: $89.00
The Kardia Mobile is the world’s most clinically validated personal and portable ECG heart monitor. Kardia Mobile is FDA-cleared and can detect Tachycardia, Atrial Fibrillation, and Bradycardia. It is one of the most reliable devices you can use from home or on the go to keep track of your heart.
The Wellue DuoEK is not cleared by the regulatory authorities and should not be used for establishing a diagnostic but more as an informative device to detect irregular heartbeat.
Number of leads
The Kardia Mobile has one lead, which is enough to collect data about heart rhythms. The Kardia Mobile is the number one recommended personal ECG heart monitor. The device has over 100 million EKGs recorded.
Instead of one lead, the Wellue DuoEK comes with two. It provides hand, leg, and chest measurements to obtain reliable data.
Convenience of use
The two devices are highly portable and convenient to use. It only takes 30 seconds to record an EKG, and the data are synchronized either with Android or iOS devices. They can both be carried in a pocket.
The Wellue DuoEK somehow frees you from the stress of having to carry your phone with you. It is capable of storing data that’s worth up to twenty minutes. All the data will be automatically uploaded to the App once your phone is connected to the device. It is worth noting that the longest maximum time for ECG monitoring is 15 minutes, while the length of time saved in the memory is 20 minutes.
KardiaMobile by AliveCor
Price when reviewed: $89.00
Both devices weigh 0.6 ounces or 18 grams, making them light and convenient to carry anywhere you go.
App and additional analyses
The Kardia Mobile comes with an app available for both Android and iOS smartphones. The data can be saved and shared with your doctor simply by the press of a button. There is a monthly charge of $9.99 to access additional features such as advanced determinations, four board-certified cardiologist reviews of your EKG per year, as well as cloud storage, medication tracking, and device replacement.
The free app that comes with the Wellue DuoEK enables one to easily keep track in real-time of the waveforms appearing on the dashboard. It is also possible to look at the report history whenever needed.
To wrap up
Both devices are excellent for people who want to regularly check their heart rhythm without having to go to the doctor. The KardiaMobile comes with an FDA clearance, can be purchased with an FSA or HSA account, and offers for an additional fee the possibility to have the electrocardiograms checked by a cardiologist.
The Wellue DuoEK is a reliable device as well that offers two leads recordings even though it is not FDA cleared. The built-in memory avoids the need to carry a phone, and the chest strap is useful for precise recordings.
When in doubt, always talk to your doctor or cardiologist. These personal EKG monitors are very informative, but they should never be used for self-diagnostics and self-medication.