About 70 million people have high blood pressure in the United States alone. And like many other chronic diseases, it’s become increasingly recognized that clinic visits every three months just doesn’t cut it when managing high blood pressure.
We’ve talked about how home blood pressure monitoring can help fill that gap, including reviewing the best connected blood pressure monitors on the market. For patients with standard, unconnected blood pressure monitors, we’ve reviewed some great blood pressure apps to help them ditch the paper and pen like Hello Heart.
Quanttus, a digital health company exploring new technology for blood pressure management, recently released a new blood pressure app called Q Heart. And at the risk of giving away the rest of this review, Q Heart has quickly leapt ahead of the pack.
Q Heart lets users track two things – blood pressure and medications. On first use, Q Heart opens with series of introductory and set up screens. On subsequent use, it opens on a home screen with last blood pressure and a plus sign to add a new entry.
Q Heart has a ton of interesting features that can be configured from the Set Up screen. Reminders to check blood pressure can be set; the default is three times per day which seems like overkill and definitely something to advise patients to change. Users can also set up generic medication reminders – actual medication names and doses can’t be entered, just the time that the user is supposed to take some medication(s).
Q Heart can be linked to Apple Health from this screen as well. Users can also enable smart location and activity tagging, which will automate some of the tagging when entering a new blood pressure.
If the user has set up medication tracking, then when tapping the Plus sign from the Home Screen, they’ll be able to enter either a new blood pressure reading or that they took a medication. So if they’ve set up medication reminders for 8 AM and 6 PM, they can basically check yes/no on whether they took medications at those times. Again, they can’t say what they took – just that they took something.
For blood pressure tracking, entry of a new blood pressure reading is really easy and straightforward. I was also happy to see a prompt pop up reminding users on correct technique for measuring blood pressure. After entering the blood pressure, users can also add specific tags for that reading like recent activities or something they ate.
Reviewing blood pressure history is done by tapping the Chart icon on the top right of the home screen. There are three ways to visualize the data. The Summary view gives breakdowns of how many blood pressure entries fell into the different ranges, variations based on time of day, and weekly average. It’s a lot of information that could be overwhelming and a bit tough to digest for the average patient. The Chart view offers a more intuitive graph that can show daily, weekly, and monthly averages. Finally, the List view offers, as expected, a list of every value.
To share data, users can tap on the Export button from the List view or go to Export Data from the Set Up Screen. There are options to filter data by date range and tags. Data can be shared as a .CSV file or PDF. Right now, the data can only be emailed to the account with which the user registered. To share with their doctor, users would have to forward that email to their doctor.
- Easy to enter blood pressure readings.
- Information on correctly measuring blood pressure presented when users enter new reading
- Able to share data as CSV or PDF
- Can set up reminders to check blood pressure
- Apple Health integrated
- Well designed chart visualization of blood pressure trends
- Medication reminder function is a bit rudimentary compared to some dedicated medication tracking apps
- Can’t share data directly with physician or care team (have to email yourself then forward)
- Blood pressure Summary screen is a bit overwhelming in terms of the number of ways in which data is summarized. A more intuitive and focused presentation could be helpful.
- No Android version
Q Heart is an excellent blood pressure app for patients who need to track their blood pressure at home and have an “unconnected” blood pressure monitor. There are betters apps out there for medication tracking and there are certainly areas that could be improved. But overall, Q Heart has the key features – reminders to check blood pressure, guidance on correct technique, useful data visualization tools, and ability to export data – and a straightforward overall design that make it an outstanding blood pressure app.
- Overall Score
- User Interface
Generally intuitive design, though summary screen could be improved
- Multimedia Usage
Appropriate for intended use; the charts in particular are pretty well done
- Real World Applicability
Addresses a clear need, one for which there are surprisingly few great apps
- Device Used For Review
- Available for DownloadiPhone