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Comparison of Recording of Blood Pressure by Mercury Sphygmomanometer and Digital Sphygmometer: A Pilot Study

Parveen S, Punita Sharma, Ugu Libang, Sukhpal Kaur


Mercury sphygmomanometers are being replaced by other devices due the risk of mercury exposure to individuals as well as the environment. However, the accuracy of blood pressure (BP) recording must be ensured. The devices should be clinically validated before use. Present study was done to compare the recording of BP with mercury and digital sphygmomanometer. A descriptive comparative study design was employed. Fifty hospitalised patients were purposively selected. Patient information sheet and BP recording sheets were used to record the data. Three observations each with the mercury sphygmomanometer and the digital sphygmomanometer per patient were recorded. The interval of recording BP with both the instruments was thirty minutes. The average of the three observations was calculated for systolic as well as diastolic BP. No statistical differences were observed between the mean readings of BP taken with the two devices for both systolic BP (p=0.24) and diastolic BP (p=0.54). The time taken to complete recording blood pressure through mercury and digital sphygmomanometer was also statistically insignificant (p=0.71). The results indicate the possibility of replacing the mercury sphygmomanometer with digital sphygmomanometer to monitor BP in patients and create a mercury free environment.

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