The smarter way to measure blood pressure
High blood pressure (hypertension) is estimated to kill nine million people a year according to the World Health Organization. It is a particular problem in developing world countries where many people are affected by associated illnesses such as heart disease, stroke and kidney failure. However, this is a problem that is extremely difficult to tackle, especially in regions where medical technology and training may be of a relatively poor standard. The main issue is the difficulty in spotting early signs of the disease as suffers show few external symptoms. For this reason, the disease is dubbed the ‘silent killer’ and this is where a new device called MobiCuff comes in.
Developed by scientists from the Oxford Centre for Affordable Healthcare Technology, MobiCuff is a low-cost, connected device designed to accurately measure blood pressure at less than one sixth the cost of the cheapest existing devices. It utilizes a traditional cuff and air pump but the measurement process is guided by a smartphone app that interprets the data and sends to a patient’s electronically-held medical records.
The device contains a Silicon Labs EFM32TG210 32-bit microcontroller based on the ARM® Cortex®-M3 processor. The industry-leading 32-bit Cortex-M3 processor was chosen to enable the computational performance needed while maintaining maximum energy-efficiency and low-power usage.
The compact device can report pulse rates, systolic and diastolic blood pressures, has a test range of 30-260mmHg, and is accurate to within two per cent. As a smart device, companion smartphone apps will be made available to track your measurement history, remind you to take new readings, and most importantly, identify irregularities.