High Blood pressure got you feeling down lately? The University of Michigan has a novel solution fo you…. Put a ring on it. With high BP affecting 32% of the population, theres millions of people taking their blood pressure every day with a blood pressure cuff. Blood pressure cuffs are fine, but they have been around for roughly a million years, and that aren’t mobile. There are technically other options out there, but they’re very ineffective.
Taking BP without a cuff is typically taken by monitoring the speed by which blood travels through arteries (Pulse Wave Velocity). These techniques have multiple issues….: 1) they require two sensors far enough apart on different locations of the body to measure the pulse travel time (preventing simplicity and convenience); 2) they need to be frequently re-calibrated at least every few hours (diminishing practicality); and 3) they make inaccurate assumptions about certain physiological factors (e.g., vascular resistance), leading to imprecise estimates (hindering accuracy).
The solution? The ring….The sensor is small, inexpensive and low-power. It wraps around the finger like a ring and generates a waveform that is rich in information about the cardiovascular system, including BP.
Worried about accuracy? Dont worry, they assure you that it had the ring tested on a pig (who tests BP on a pig??) and the outcome was between 90% and 98% accuracy. Dont like the pig results? They tested it on human beings and it was a 83% success rate. Its not a perfect solution yet, but the potential is there. “If you like it then you shoulda put a ring on it.”
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