Measuring Blood Pressure at Home

As a candy and sugary products lover, I have to prepare for a diabetic future. Along with diabetes, I am bound to have high blood pressure as well if I don’t change my diet, of which I there is fat chance. If I can’t avoid it, I must prepare for the inevitable. Thankfully, scientists, such as UMass Amherst Engineer Jenna Marquard, are helping sweets lovers like me by creating a new system to monitor their blood pressure at home. This system is not only convenient for the geriatric community for whom excessive travel can be a hassle, but also helps deliver more accurate results by evading the “White Coat Syndrome.”

The “White Coat Syndrome” is the effect of registering higher blood pressure when tested by doctors in hospital induced stressful situations. A new system that allows for the test to be performed at the comfort of one’s home and by oneself or family member would yield more accurate results. Jenna Marquard is part of a team of researchers involved in a 2-million dollar project to produce a low-cost technology that does exactly that. By making the process easy and less stressful, the project will deliver more accurate results directly to nurses or doctors who adjust the medication accordingly. The system is being tested by people with diabetes by the UMass Medical School.

The regular monitoring will enable the patients and the doctors to act quickly and prevent serious health risks associated with high blood pressure, “ranging from strokes and heart attacks to death.” If the system is used in larger numbers and as efficiently as intended, many problems could be averted for diabetics and people with hypertension. In fact, with the abundant advances in sciences and medicine, why stop at blood pressure?

Written by: Jaymin Patel


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