Development of a Networked Blood Pressure Monitoring System, 10-9369Printer Friendly Version
Inclusive Dates: 12/17/02 - Current
Background - Healthcare costs are expected to increase at double-digit rates in the coming years. Cardiovascular disease is the primary cause of death of males in the U.S. and consumes a large share of these healthcare dollars. Hypertension, also called high blood pressure, most commonly is the result of a narrowing or stiffening of the arteries. If untreated, hypertension can lead to heart attack or even death. If detected early, hypertension can often be reversed through diet, exercise, and pharmaceuticals. This reduces the likelihood of catastrophic disease, hospitalization, and death.
Approach - The objective of this project is to develop and implement a networked environment at the Institute to monitor the arterial health of SwRI employees. The goal of this implementation is to investigate improving employee health and to establish an Institute capability for networking medical devices using the Internet.
The general approach was to network-enable an existing automated blood pressure measurement device (Colin BP-203RV II) to automatically save blood pressure measurements in an online database. The system was developed using open source software components.
Accomplishments - A blood pressure measurement station was designed that consisted of a Colin blood pressure measurement device and a control computer. A parallel port-controlled switch circuit was added to the Colin device to prevent unauthorized use of the system. When a user logs into the web interface, a custom-written LabVIEWTM program running on the control computer identifies the successful login and activates the switch, thus enabling the blood pressure device. Blood pressure measurements are sent from the Colin device to the control computer via a serial port connection. The LabVIEW program automatically stores the obtained blood pressure measurements on the project database server. The project server was developed using open source software components and consists of Intel-based hardware running the Linux operation system (RedHat 7.3), the Apache web server (1.3.28), and the MySQL database server (4.0.15).
A web-based portal interface to the database and
other blood pressure reference material was developed using the Geeklog (http://www.geeklog.net)
open-source software package. The portal allows subjects to review their history
of blood pressure measurements in tabular and graphical format. In addition, the
portal allows subjects to manually keep a history of their weight that is
viewable in tabular format.