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Blood pressure sensors have been incorporated into smartphone technology

Mobile blood pressure sensor (Getty Images)

Researchers from Michigan State University and the University of Maryland has incorporated a blood pressure sensor app within smartphone technology.

In a bid to make healthcare increasingly bespoke, companies are looking to incorporate healthcare solutions in everyday technologies. The development of new healthcare apps has therefore seen exponential growth significant growth, rising from $6.7bn in 2012, with a predicted increase of $58.8bn by 2020.

In a recent paper, Science Translational Medicine, researchers have explained how the sensor only requires the use of a fingertip which is pressed against it, which will provide systolic and diastolic blood pressure results, rivalling that of traditional cuff devices.

The technology will also give greater control to consumers in their daily health management and enable users to check their blood pressure more often and reduce the risk of hypertension and cardiovascular disease.

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The sensor will have the ability to measure changes in blood volume through the use of photoplethysmography (PPG), where a force transducer will apply pressure, IEEE Spectrum reports.

Tested on over 30 candidates, over 90% were able to figure out the connect technique to use the technology after less than three attempts, making it an easy and accessible solution going forward, Biomedical Engineer Ramakrishna Mukkamala reported in the study.

“Screening for hypertension may be the main clinical application of the device, especially in the 20- to 50-year-old segment of the population who are often technology savvy and health conscious but may be at risk for early development of hypertension,” explained Michigan State University.

It will also support the healthcare industry in developing countries, where the use of mobile tools is common, yet expensive medical equipment remains a complex process to acquire, in addition to accessing a medical professional.