Apple Watch helps save pregnant woman’s life in Southern California

Apple Watch Series 8 are on display at an Apple Store at The Grove in Los Angeles, Friday,...
Apple Watch Series 8 are on display at an Apple Store at The Grove in Los Angeles, Friday, Sept. 16, 2022. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)(Jae C. Hong | AP)
Published: Jan. 20, 2023 at 7:32 AM PST
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Originally Published: 20 JAN 23 10:28 ET

By KCAL KCBS Staff

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COSTA MESA (KCAL, KCBS) -- A 39-year-old pregnant woman in Costa Mesa sought medical help after her Apple Watch warned her something was wrong.

“I literally thought I was going to die,” said Jesse Kelly. “There were so many doctors and stuff in there.”

With a high-risk pregnancy due to her age, Kelly is telling her story about how her Apple Watch may have helped save her life and the life of her new baby girl.

“I had been laying in bed, not feeling well,” she said. “I didn’t know if it was my morning sickness coming back ... or if it was my son’s stomach flu.”

With a few weeks until her due date, the Costa Mesa mom said she wasn’t doing any sort of activity that would’ve pumped her heart rate up above 120 beats per minute. However, her smart watch kept chirping at her with a warning saying her heart rate was high.

“It went off the first time and I thought it was strange,” Kelly said. “Then the second time maybe ten minutes later or so and then the third time maybe a half hour or so later. When it went off the third time I thought ‘OK something is going on.’”

She went straight to the hospital, something that Dr. Brian Kolski would recommend anyone do. While the Providence St. Joseph cardiologist doesn’t treat Kelly, he has had patients who are prescribed Apple Watches to detect certain heart conditions.

“Sounds like it was accurate,” said Kolski. “And one of the first signs when people are in trouble, whether it’s low blood pressure [or] bleeding, is an elevated heart rate.”

When Kelly arrived at the hospital she was in full-blown labor. Her blood pressure was dropping and she was losing blood due to a pregnancy complication known as placenta abruption.

Yet, three hours later she was gifted a healthy baby girl named Shelby Marie. She’s grateful for not only the doctors and nurses that cared for her, but also for her Apple Watch that gave her a warning.

Now coming from experience, Kelly advised everyone to pay attention to their alerts.

“It’s not just a text message,” she said. “Pay attention to it and listen to your body.”

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