Wearables might be able to screen for premature birth


Whoop’s new study shows changes in heart rate variability ahead of delivery. | Image: Whoop

Monitoring changes in heart rate in pregnant people may be a way to screen for people who will deliver prematurely, according to new data from researchers working at wearable company Whoop.

Preterm birth is risky and can lead to health complications for both the parent and the infant. But it’s hard to predict who might be likely to go into labor early. “Accessible, noninvasive screening options for premature birth can serve as early warning signs for pregnant people, giving them more time to find and administer interventions to improve health outcomes,” said Elizabeth Cherot, chief medical officer of the medical practice Axia Women’s Health, in a statement from Whoop.

The Whoop wearable device calculates users’ heart rate variability,…

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