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A Guide to Blood Pressure Monitors

As your heart beats, it pumps blood throughout your body through blood vessels. The strength at which this blood pushes against blood vessel walls is your blood pressure. 

When measuring blood pressure, you will always get two readings. The first is the systolic pressure i.e. the blood pressure while the heart is beating, and the other is the diastolic pressure which is measured while the heart is at rest, between beats. If blood pressure is too high (hypertension), there can be a lot of strain on your vessels as well as your heart, and this may lead to heart attacks and strokes. It is therefore very important to be able to monitor blood pressure, both in a clinical and an individual capacity.

Monitoring blood pressure gives physicians a snapshot of their patient’s circulatory system and it is essential in prevention and diagnosis of diseases, as well as routine check-ups. There are three types of blood pressure monitors that can be used, namely, mercurial, aneroid, and digital. The mercurial and aneroid types are manual devices, often referred to as sphygmomanometers. These devices are more cost effective than their digital counterparts but are slowly being replaced in clinical settings. 

Sphygmomanometers are made up of an arm cuff, a squeeze bulb that inflates the cuff, a stethoscope, and a gauge to measure blood pressure. When pressure in the cuff rises, a needle on a dial moves clockwise, and when pressure falls, there is an anti-clockwise movement. The markings on the dial indicate the pressure level. Digital monitors are battery operated and they use automatically inflating/deflating cuffs. The force of blood through the arteries is measured using a microphone and results are displayed on a digital monitor.



There are pros and cons to both monitoring systems and within each category there are a wide range of devices to choose from. 

SA Healthcare is the importer and supplier into the market of a wide range of Blood Pressure units for use in home or hospital settings. We sell only to medical companies. Please enquire through our web page www.sahealthcare.co.za or call one of our sales team on 021 555 4328.

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