In this day in age, there truly is an app for everything. Researchers at Michigan State University have developed a new blood pressure app, and accompanying hardware, that they say is just as accurate as traditional blood pressure measurements.

According to the university, traditional arm cuff devices are inconvenient and mobile device apps that measure blood pressure on the market right now aren't always accurate. A team of MSU scientists set forth to create a new app and hardware for smartphones that really works, as well as discovery a more convenient measurement location on the body.

The team targeted the artery in the fingertip, making the new approach easier and more accessible.

Users are given a 1 centimeter-thick sensor unit to attach to the back of their phone. When a user turns on the app, they will be instructed to press their fingertip against the sensor. With their finger on the sensor, users need to hold their smartphone at heart level and watch their screen to ensure they're applying the right amount of pressure.

A team of Michigan State University scientists has created a new app and hardware for smartphones to measure blood pressure with accuracy that may rival arm-cuff devices.
Courtesy of MSU

MSU's new app could be a "game-changer" the university reports. While high blood pressure is treatable with lifestyle changes, only 20 percent of people with hypertension have their condition under control. MSU's blood pressure app gives patients a convenient option to keep a log of accurate daily measurements.

The development team continues to test their invention and improve their app and sensor. In the future, the finger sensor could be as thin as 1 millimeter and be part of a standard protective phone case, the university explains.

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April Stevens is a multi-platform producer at WZZM 13. Have a news tip? Email news@wzzm13.com, visit our Facebook page or Twitter