ALEYE: Heart rate/EKG Wearable

Project

ALEYE: Connect with your heart is a conceptual wearable heart rate and EKG monitor which connects the wearer to their heart’s activity and through a companion mobile app, also connects them to their emergency contacts. A product I invented as part of an interaction design studio course, it was shortlisted for the 2018 IxDA awards, in the Connecting category. The following video was included with my submission to the Interaction Design Association.

 IxDA 2018 award shortlist

Role Interaction, Product, and Visual Designer
From concept to design I conducted research and interviews, prototyped, conducted usability testing, created 3D models, designed all visual and graphics, and more.

Tools Pen & Paper, Whiteboard, Post-its, Sketch, Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop, Keynote, Rhino 3D, Google Slides

Problem Heart disease is the #1 cause of death in the world. Many who suffer heart attacks wait too long to get help and many others suffer from anxiety and depression brought on by fear of another heart attack.

Solution Design a wearable heart rate and EKG monitor, called ALEYE, which connects with a companion mobile app that notifies the wearer, plus personalized emergency contacts if they are having a heart event that requires immediate medical attention.


Research

Initial Research Key Insights

  1. A vicious cycle affects heart attack victims. There is an increased risk of another attack after their first one. This knowledge leads to a constant fear of when the next attack will happen. This often leads to anxiety and depression. Finally, the panic and anxiety attacks victims suffer can sometimes feel like the beginning of a heart attack. Not knowing what’s panic or anxiety and what’s an actual heart attack leads to unnecessary emergency room visits, higher levels of anxiety, and overall unrest.
  2. Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the world. People who suffer from heart disease have an increased chance of having a heart attack.
  3. People don’t get help fast enough after an attack for a few reasons. Heart attack symptoms are often unrecognizable. Women cite not wanting to draw attention to themselves or ‘make a fuss’. They also have vaguer symptoms than men, which may feel like heartburn, back pain, or similar less alarming pain. Men have been documented ignoring symptoms and trying to push through the pain. In all of these cases, victims wait on average 2-4 hours before seeking help.
  4. Waiting to get help can result in irreparable heart muscle damage or even death. With immediate medical attention, there may be a better chance of preventing either scenario.

This led to a question: How might I design a product that would increase the quality of life for people living with heart disease and those that have already suffered a heart attack?


Process Outline

Research

  • Quantitative
    • CVD and heart attack research
  • Qualitative
    •  Interviews: (3) heart attack survivors, (1) ICU nurse and heart attack survivor (SME), (1) Radiologist (SME),
    • Read survivor stories in AHA’s newsletter and website
  • Journey Mapping, Persona Generation – primary and secondary

Ideation

  • Brainstorming, Problem Definition
  • Conceptualization of product
  • User Scenarios
  • Competitive Analysis: Non-wearable medical devices, Health monitors, Temporary heart monitor attachments and mobile apps (closest competitors)
  • Material research
    • Microbiosensors, Micro EKG chips, Long-wearing medical grade adhesives

Design

  • Wearable prototyping: Design research, Iterations, Testing, Reiteration, Prototype, More testing!
  • Mobile app screen design: Pattern research, Mobile design
  • Final designs, logo and one-sheet visual design, and final presentation slide deck and graphics, 3D design

Summary

The heart attack victims I initially interviewed, and those who know someone who has suffered a heart attack, or live with heart disease, have expressed that they wish my ALEYE concept was a real product. Each saw the potential benefits that the product would give both themselves, their family and/or friends. My mom actually said it would give her so much peace of mind and might relieve the worry of when the next attack might be.

Aleye One Sheet

Want to see more of my process? View my blog >