Blood Pressure Check? There May Soon Be an App for That

From - March 7, 2018

Blood Pressure Check? There May Soon Be an App for That

WEDNESDAY, March 7, 2018 -- Someday soon, a simple touch of a finger to a smartphone case might be enough to provide instant, accurate blood pressure readings.

That's the promise of new technology detailed by developers in the March 7 issue of Science Translational Medicine.

Researchers say they have invented a special phone case, using high-tech 3-D printing, that contains an embedded optical sensor on top of a "force" sensor.

When the user presses a finger onto the sensor embedded in the case, "it provides measurable pressure on an artery in the finger in the same way that a blood pressure cuff squeezes an artery in the arm," according to a journal news release.

That information is then fed to a smartphone app that converts the data to a real-time blood pressure reading, displayed on the phone, says a team led by Ramakrishna Mukkamala of Michigan State University.

The researchers tested the usability of the device on 30 people, and found that about 90 percent could position their finger correctly and get consistent readings after only one or two attempts.

Two heart specialists said the device might one day be a game-changer.

"An accurate blood pressure measurement technique is critical for making helpful decisions in the management of hypertension," said Dr. Joseph Diamond. He directs nuclear cardiology at Long Island Jewish Medical Center, in New Hyde Park, N.Y.

Continue reading at »