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76-year old man sends thank-you letter to Tim Cook after the Apple Watch helped save his life

Published May 13th, 2018 3:25PM EDT
Apple Watch

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Apple may have initially positioned the Apple Watch as something of a fashion accessory, but it’s become apparent in the years since its release that most users are drawn to the device for its fitness and health tracking capabilities. In turn, one of the more interesting aspects of the Apple Watch is that there are a growing number of stories involving Apple’s wearable actually saving lives.

Last October, for example, an Apple Watch wearer named James Green received a notification that his heart rate was abnormal. Upon going to the hospital to get things checked out, doctors discovered a pulmonary embolism, a condition that could have proven to be fatal if James didn’t seek immediate medical attention.

More recently, MacRumors directs us to a story involving a 76-year old man named Gaston D’Aquino who claims he may have died had his Apple Watch not alerted him that he was experiencing an elevated heart rate. Originally published in the South China Morning Post, D’Aquino was in the midst of a church service last month when his Apple Watch sent him an alert indicating that his heart rate reading was amiss. Though he was otherwise feeling fine, D’Aquino decided to go to the doctor just to play it safe.

As it turns out, D’Aquino’s decision ended up saving his life. Upon further testing, doctors discovered that two of D’Aquino’s three main coronary arteries were fully blocked, with the third 90% blocked. Shortly thereafter, D’Aquino elected to have a surgical procedure known as an angioplasty whereupon he was sent home later that same week.

Now fully recovered, D’Aquino recently sent a letter to Tim Cook to express his thanks.

The self-professed Apple fan sent an email to Apple CEO Tim Cook on April 6, with the subject “Thank you, Apple Watch saved my life”. He recounted his story, noting that “this was the first time that my watch alert had ever gone off, but I was not feeling anything, no dizziness or pain” and “in short, I was a walking time bomb”.
After the successful operation, he wrote, “I have been given a new lease on life”.

D’Aquino concluded: “Please continue promoting the use of the Apple Watch for anyone with cardiac problems. I lost a cousin two weeks ago to a massive heart attack, and if he had an Apple Watch, he might have had the same opportunity I got – to live.”

D’Aquino told the Post that he wanted to share his story so that other people can take potentially life-saving medical action when they might be completely oblivious to what’s happening with their heart.

Yoni Heisler Contributing Writer

Yoni Heisler has been writing about Apple and the tech industry at large with over 15 years of experience. A life long expert Mac user and Apple expert, his writing has appeared in Edible Apple, Network World, MacLife, Macworld UK, and TUAW.

When not analyzing the latest happenings with Apple, Yoni enjoys catching Improv shows in Chicago, playing soccer, and cultivating new TV show addictions.

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