Annals of Cardiac Anaesthesia Annals of Cardiac Anaesthesia Annals of Cardiac Anaesthesia
Home | About us | Editorial Board | Search | Ahead of print | Current Issue | Archives | Submission | Subscribe | Advertise | Contact | Login 
Users online: 1235 Small font size Default font size Increase font size Print this article Email this article Bookmark this page


    Advanced search

    Similar in PUBMED
   Search Pubmed for
   Search in Google Scholar for
    Email Alert *
    Add to My List *
* Registration required (free)  

    Article Figures

 Article Access Statistics
    PDF Downloaded192    
    Comments [Add]    

Recommend this journal


Year : 2011  |  Volume : 14  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 66
Positioning pressure transducers: upright or upside down?

Department of Neuroanaesthesiology, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India

Click here for correspondence address and email

Date of Web Publication31-Dec-2010

How to cite this article:
Sokhal N, Dube SK, Rath GP, Marda MK. Positioning pressure transducers: upright or upside down?. Ann Card Anaesth 2011;14:66

How to cite this URL:
Sokhal N, Dube SK, Rath GP, Marda MK. Positioning pressure transducers: upright or upside down?. Ann Card Anaesth [serial online] 2011 [cited 2022 Nov 28];14:66. Available from:


Invasive arterial blood pressure (IABP) monitoring is an established modality in present day anesthesiology, for better care of patients undergoing major surgeries. Different components of this pressure monitoring system include intra-arterial catheter, extension tubing, stopcock, flush devices, pressure transducer, amplifier, and recorder. [1] In addition to continuous blood pressure monitoring, arterial pressure monitoring system enables frequent aspiration of blood for arterial blood gas (ABG) analysis. A common problem is encountered during blood sample collection for ABG. The blood is not cleared from the transducer site completely, after aspiration followed by flushing of pressure line with heparinized saline. A little amount of blood remains in the stopcock and extension tubing which gradually settles down into the transducer [Figure 1]a. Many a times the problem persists even after the use of a continuous flush device. As a solution to this problem, we fix the pressure transducer upside down. It prevents blood from entering into the pressure transducer even after aspiration of blood through the stopcock [Figure 1]b. This proceeding works for all available pressure transducers.
Figure 1 :(a) Pressure transducer placed upright with collected blood (arrow). (b) A clean pressure transducer placed upside down.

Click here to view

Blood clots and air bubbles are known to have adverse influence on dynamic response of the IABP system [2] and may even attribute to errors in pressure readings. To ensure the correct transducer level for accurate pressure reading, the zero pressure loci (air−fluid interface at the level of the stopcock) has to be aligned with a specific position on the patient. [2] Hence, the arrangement of the transducer, whether upright or upside down, will not influence the pressure reading as long as the zero pressure loci is aligned, correctly. Therefore, we suggest placement of pressure transducers upside down, to prevent blood contamination thereby, achieving an error-free pressure monitoring.

   References Top

1.Gardner RM. Direct blood pressure measurement-dynamic response requirements. Anesthesiology 1981;54:227-36.  Back to cited text no. 1
2.Mark JB, Slaughter TF. Cardiovascular monitoring. In: Miller RD, editor. Miller's Anesthesia. 6th ed. Philadelphia: Elsevier Churchill Livingstone Inc.; 2005. p. 1265-362.  Back to cited text no. 2

Correspondence Address:
Girija P Rath
Department of Neuroanaesthesiology, 6th Floor, Room No. 9, Neurosciences Centre, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi 110 029
Login to access the Email id

Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0971-9784.74409

Rights and Permissions


  [Figure 1]


Previous articleNext article