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Environmental Factor

Environmental Factor

Your Online Source for NIEHS News

December 2019

NIEHS provides analysis for Apple Women’s Health Study

The long-term study will evaluate menstrual cycles and such health conditions as infertility and osteoporosis.

NIEHS researchers will provide expert advice and data analysis for the Apple Women’s Health Study, a long-term study to better understand menstrual cycles and how they relate to women’s health.

Apple released the study Nov. 14 — along with the Apple Heart and Movement and the Apple Hearing studies — via its highly anticipated Research app. The new app can be downloaded from the App Store and will allow participants to contribute to potentially groundbreaking medical discoveries using an iPhone or Apple Watch. Anyone older than 18 years who has ever menstruated can enroll and participate.

Screeenshot of Apple Women's Health Study on the iPhone and watch The Apple Women’s Health Study leverages the unique capabilities of the iPhone and Apple Watch to allow participants to enroll and participate from the comfort of home. (Photo courtesy of Apple)

With this study collaboration, NIEHS, Apple, and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health have a unique opportunity to study menstrual cycles and their relationship to various health conditions.

  • Polycystic ovary syndrome.
  • Infertility.
  • Osteoporosis.
  • Menopausal transition.

The study, originally announced Sept. 10, will collect study-specific data, such as cycle tracking information, and will use monthly surveys. The study is longitudinal in nature, potentially lasting decades.

The data collected will be used to develop innovative health technology, and study findings may be published in scientific journals.

A separate, third-party research support center will protect customers’ privacy and ensure that Apple will not have access to information collected through the Research app — such as name, email address, and phone number — that identifies participants. Only scientists on the study team may have access to identifying information, if they need to contact a participant for study-related purposes.


NIEHS resources

Check out the links below for NIEHS environmental health topics and related fact sheets, which you can download and print.

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