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(Credit: AliveCor)

Technology is making it easier to track your heart health. Before the Apple Watch Series 4 announced its electrocardiogram (EKG) app, mobile vendor AliveCor developed a life-changing band to work with the watch's original heart rate sensor.

The KardiaBand is an FDA-approved device that can take instant EKGs anywhere with its Bluetooth strap.

AliveCor's device, KardiaMobile, pairs with the Kardia app (iOS, Android). According to J. Brent Muhlestein, a medical doctor and cardiovascular researcher at the Intermountain Medical Center Heart Institute in Salt Lake City, KardiaMobile can determine if someone is having an ST-Elevation Myocardial Infarction (STEMI) better than a traditional EKG.

SEE: 3 ways Apple Watch Series 4 opens the door for a new breed of health apps

A STEMI is the most serious type of heart attack. During a STEMI, a person's artery becomes suddenly and completely blocked. The window for detection and treatment is crucial and small.

"The sooner you can get the artery open, the better the patient is going to do," Muhlestein told Health Data Management. "We found this app may dramatically speed things up and save your life."

KardiaMobile costs $100 for the device that pairs with the app. It's the more affordable option next to the KardiaBand, which used to be $200, plus a $10 per month Premium membership.

To use KardiaMobile, simply open the app and tap "record now." Place the KardiaMobile device near your phone and lightly rest your fingers on the pads. Without wires, pads, or messy gel, the app generates a result in about 30 seconds.

The recordings are easy to read. If your test is normal, a green stripe will appear at the top of the screen that says "Normal" with your beats per minute rate. If the result is abnormal, Kardia will give a potential diagnosis, like "possible atrial fibrillation" for example.

You can take unlimited EKGs and email them to yourself and your doctor. Premium membership isn't required, but you can keep an unlimited recording history for $10 per month.

The app works on most Android, iOS, and tablet devices; check the website for a full list.

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(Credit: Screenshot by Download.com)

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Takeaways

  1. KardiaMobile can determine if someone is having an ST-Elevation Myocardial Infarction (STEMI) better than a traditional EKG.
  2. To use KardiaMobile, simply open the app and tap "record now." Place the KardiaMobile device near your phone and lightly rest your fingers on the pads. The app generates a result in about 30 seconds.

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Shelby is an Associate Writer for CNET's Download.com. She served as Editor in Chief for the Louisville Cardinal newspaper at the University of Louisville. She interned as Creative Non-Fiction Editor for Miracle Monocle literary magazine. Her work appears in Glass Mountain Magazine, Bookends Review, Soundings East, and on Louisville.com. Her cat, Puck, is the best cat ever.