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Sphygmomanometers

A range of manual sphygmomanometers, in either 1 or 2 handed versions, as well as semi-automatic and fully automatic sphygmomanometers in a range of colours and patterns.

Most nurses at some point in their career will use a sphygmomanometer, in conjunction with a stethoscope, to manually take a patient’s blood pressure reading and we have a full range of sphygmomanometers ranging from standard 2 hand operated models through to fully automatic blood pressure monitors.

A sphygmomanometer, which was first developed around  1881 by an Austrian physician called Von Basch , is medical instrument that is used to measure the blood pressure of a patient in millimetres of mercury (mmHg).  Of course today mist users will use a modern two handed aneroid model in which the mercury is replaced by a precision aneroid gauge but which still shows the reading in the traditional mmHg manner. One handed sphygmomanometers are also available and these combine the bellows and gauge in one unit so freeing up one of the practitioners hands to place the stethoscope under the blood pressure cuff. Having said that the basic method of taking a blood pressure measurement with each of these sphygmomanometers is the same.

Basically a sphygmomanometer comprises a cuff that is connected to small hand operated bellows which force air into a cuff secured around the upper arm and hence constricts blood flow. On a 2 handed model a second tube leads the BP gauge, on one handed models these functions are combined in one unit.

As an example if a patient’s blood pressure is taken as 130/80 (130 over 80), then the  highest measurement is obtained when, after inflating the cuff, the pressure to allowed to fall in a controlled manner by releasing air via the air release valve. This release of pressure allows the blood to begin flowing again and the practitioner can hear the movement of blood through the stethoscope positioned over the brachial artery. This first reading (130) is called the systolic reading and is a measure of the hearts maximum out put pressure. The release of pressure from the cuff is continued and the doctor/nurse continues to listen until the point at which no further sound can be heard, this second measurement (80) indicates the pressure that is apparent in the system when the heart is resting (i.e. it no longer has to work against the pressure of the cuff) and this is termed the diastolic reading.

Other products in the range include a range of differing sized blood pressure cuffs from child sizes through to large adult and automatic sphygs which are easy to use and do not require the level of training and expertise demanded by traditional aneroid manual sphygmomanometers.

All the sphygmomanometers (sphygs) in the range are latex free in the constriction for patient safety and all are manufactured to the highest European standards.

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