Pulse in finger reveals your heart`s health

Washington: A physiologist has developed a new technique to measure a person`s heart health with the help of their finger`s pulse.

The new method by Gary Pierce, assistant professor in the Department of Health and Human Physiology, University of Iowa, works by placing an instrument called a transducer on the finger or over the brachial artery, located inside the arm just beneath the elbow.

The readout, combined with a person`s age and body mass index, lets physicians know whether the aorta has stiffened.

Pierce said that taking a pulse from the finger or on the arm is easier to record and nearly as accurate and also works better with obese patients, whose femoral pulse can be difficult to obtain reliably.

Pierce asserted that the technique is more effective in that it is easy to obtain just one pulse waveform in the finger or the brachial artery, and it`s less intrusive than obtaining a femoral waveform in patients.

He added that it can also be easily obtained in the clinic during routine exams similar to blood pressure tests.

The study has been published in the American Journal of Physiology - Heart and Circulatory Physiology.