October 20th - November 23rd, 2005
If You Have to
the case of a woman who got arrested for driving after drinking just one
glass of wine, the
Washington Post has taken a look at two cheap personal breathalyzer
devices. They are the Alcohawk Checkpoint ($24.99 for 12 single-use tubes)
and the Legal Limit Breathscan ($3.99 for a key chain holder and one
some reports vouch for the accuracy of certain handheld testers, many
experts say that self-testing is not a good idea. (Legal Limit is marketed
as a device for testing a possibly drunk friend.) An accurate reading
depends on breathing properly, and "if you're impaired, you're more likely
to mess it up," said Robert Shesser, chairman of emergency medicine at
George Washington University Hospital. His advice: If you've been drinking
and "think you should take a breathalyzer test, you shouldn't be driving."
Guide to Buying
the Best Breathalyzer
introductory website for information about breathalyzers and alcohol
detection equipment is probably that of Q3
Innovations, which makes the
AlcoHawk range of
digital alcohol testers.
Breathalyzer.net website shows the
results of breathalyzer
comparison tests carried out by MPH magazine.
media reports are available online:
Montreal Gazette in November 2005 provided a short review of the
AlcoHawk Elite monitor....Continue
reading Guide to Buying the Best Breathalyzer.
November 21st, 2005
Guidance for Babies
A new Mum
St Louis Post-Dispatch advice columnist for help on what kind of
thermometer to use for her baby:
confused about temperature-taking. I thought rectal temperatures were the
most accurate, but now the nurse at my doctor's office says to subtract a
degree if you use a rectal thermometer. So my son's 100-degree temperature
is suddenly nothing to worry about because it's only 99. Is this right?
Heidi Sallee, assistant professor of pediatrics at St. Louis University and
a pediatrician at Cardinal Glennon Children's Hospital, says rectal
temperature-taking is still the standard. And go with the temperature on the
thermometer - don't worry about adding or subtracting.
"The best way to get a core temperature, a real temperature, is rectally,"
said Sallee, who also noted that "there have been no good medical studies
published to say whether you should add a degree under the arm."
For infants less than 2 months old, if a rectal temperature reaches 100.5,
it's time to call the doctor. "They are going to get a huge work-up, spinal
tap, hospital stay," says Sallee. "In infants under 2 months, that 100.5 is
critical." She says that once a child is more than 2 months old, it's best
to look at the behavior of the child combined with what the thermometer is
"The actual degree of fever doesn't matter as much as looking at the child
and the symptoms," she said. "If the temperature is 101 and they are alert
and eating well, that's not as much of a concern as if it's 101 and they are
lethargic and not eating."
Guide to Buying
the Best Heart Rate
introductory guide comes from Running Times, titled
Heart Rate Monitors, based on tests of 10. According to the report:
Selecting a monitor
can be as overwhelming as buying a computer - the selection of options is
staggering. All of them provide the key data you want - your continuous
heart rate during exercise. Some advanced features provide valuable data,
while others are toys for the technogeek. The bottom line is how much
gadgetry you are comfortable with....continue
reading Guide to Buying the Best Heart Rate Monitor
Guide to Buying
the Best Body Fat Monitor
difficult to find objective information about body fat monitors, also known
as body composition monitors. The following information is intended to make
your search a little easier.
website, in its Health and Fitness section has several articles:
You Buy a Body Fat Monitor,
Body Fat Monitors,
Your Body Fat? and
commercial site, Test
Medical Symptons @ Home, contains a lengthy article,
Body Fat Analysis, and a table,
of Determining Body Fat....continue
Guide to Buying the Best Body Fat
November 11th, 2005
Guide to Buying the Best
everywhere. Your local supermarket possibly even sells several varieties.
Amazon lists around 250 pedometer products. In fact, of more than 3,800
health monitor products being sold by Amazon, a pedometer - the Omron HJ-112
- is the most popular. How do you choose?
Price, accuracy and
special features will be the keys for most people. The following is a guide
to finding on the internet the information that you need....continue
reading Guide to Buying the Best Pedometer
November 10th, 2005
A Nurse Chooses
the Best Home Blood Pressure Monitor
There's an interesting
report in the
Orlando Sentinel – apparently originally from Newsday - with
a registered nurse testing various home blood pressure monitors:
want: Accuracy. Automatic monitors are nice and convenient with automatic
inflation and digital readouts, but the least expensive and most accurate is
a manual device.
I must have: A cuff size that fits; too small will give a reading too high,
too big will give a reading too low. The cuff on a manual monitor has a
built-in stethoscope (not the best choice if you're hard of hearing, because
you need to hear your heartbeat through the 'scope). A semiautomatic monitor
provides a digital readout, but you have to inflate the cuff, while an
automatic monitor is most popular because it does all the work for you --
but you pay for that convenience.
What I hate: Finger and wrist monitors are cute but not very accurate; a
wrist cuff is too far from your heart, so the reading will be lower.
Savvy shopper: If you're buying a monitor on a recommendation from your
doctor, check to see if your health insurance plan covers the cost. Also,
monitors that connect to your PC can give you more information and even
analyze the reading.
was a Samsung manual blood pressure monitor, costing $39.99 at Target. The
“next best thing” was the Omron HEM-780, a fully automatic model.
Finding the Best
A digital home
medical thermometer is becoming a standard family accessory. Unfortunately, it is
not easy to find objective reviews of thermometers (or of most other
personal health monitor products) on the internet. This article is intended
as a list of sites that will guide you....continue
Internet Guide to Finding the Best Home
November 4th, 2005
Buying a Home Blood Pressure Monitor
Amazon sells more than 1,100 blood pressure products. Not all are
monitors, and some monitors come in dozens of varieties, each with a
separate Amazon listing. But still, hundreds of home monitors are on the
market. Where do you start?...continue
Guide to Buying the Best Home
Blood Pressure Monitor.
November 4th, 2005
The Best Home
Consumer Reports has published
its latest test results on home thermometers. The full report is only
available to subscribers, but a press release is
report found that ear and forehead thermometers, though giving very quick
readings, were difficult to use, were not always accurate and were
expensive. Rather, the
Accu-Beep digital thermometer from BD did the best job, beeping when
properly placed under the tongue and giving an accurate reading in sixty
seconds. For quicker results, the report recommended the Vick's Comfort-Flex
thermometer and the
Omron 20-seconds digital thermometer.
Healthcare Business for Omron
One of the
leaders in personal healthcare monitors, Japan’s Omron, has announced its
business results for the half year to September 2005. Its healthcare sales
(which represent around 10% of total company turnover) rose 15.3% to 27.55
billion yen (about $235 million).
to a report in
Investor’s Business Daily:
Japan, interest in healthcare continued to increase, and despite the
slackening growth rate of body composition monitors, which expanded strongly
in the previous fiscal year, sales of digital blood pressure monitors and
other products were favorable, and overall sales increased over the same
period in the previous fiscal year. In overseas markets, sales declined due
to slower demand for digital blood pressure monitors in the United States
and China, but sales of digital blood pressure monitors and nebulizers,
which are core products, increased in Europe and Southeast Asia.
Medical is to be
honored at this week’s
Stars of Innovation Gala
– organized by the San Antonio Technology Accelerator Initiative – for its
thermometer for diabetics. The thermometer is for diabetics who have nerve
damage, and allows them to check for "hot spots" or inflammation on the
bottoms of their feet. An estimated one-third of diabetics suffer from foot
ailments, and an estimated 20% of all diabetes-related hospitalizations stem
from foot problems. Further details are at the
Electronic Lithium Scale with Large Read Out
Amazon’s popular products. The
specifications are as follows:
Solid Steel Construction
Large LCD display
Instant on and automatic zero
Accurate to 300 LBS or 136KG
Taylor, the leader in bathroom scales, offers a simple, easy to use,
dependable bathroom scale. Slim and compact, the scale allows
cramped bathrooms. Attractive silver finish, with smooth black mat.
Featuring auto on/auto off - just step on the scale to get an accurate
reading - Taylor uses strain gauge mechanisms for precise results. The
display is easy to read, the capacity of 300 lbs (136 kgs) reads to the 0.5
lb. Includes a long-life
lithium battery for readings day after day, week after week, month after
month with no replacement. Lifetime warranty.
Review of Omron
Body Fat Tracker
easy to find comprehensive and objective reviews of personal health
monitors. So it is good to read an excellent review of the Omron HPF 306
body fat tracker, which I previewed a few days ago. The review is by Charlie
White at the
Digital Toys website.
One of our colleagues
here at the Midwest Test Facility is built like a model and rail-thin, and
it measured her percentage of body fat and BMI at an identical percentage of
18.5%. Others of us who are not so fortunate ranged from 25 to 33%. It was
also interesting to note that various times of the day yielded different
readings, where early in the morning a reading of 23.7% turns to a 25.2%
reading late in the afternoon. According to the documentation, this is
normal because different levels of fluid fluctuate during the day.
We found the Omron
Body Fat Analyzer to be an accurate instrument, and easy and fun to use as
well. It’s simple to set up, and even though it doesn’t store its readings,
it stores your personal data so you won’t need to enter it each time you use
it, and offers consistent results. The price is right, and it’s helping us
keep an eye on our overall personal health. Highly recommended. 9.5 out of