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Swedish study finds body temperature best taken from behind

TT/David Landes · 15 Oct 2009, 13:59

Published: 15 Oct 2009 13:59 GMT+02:00

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Researchers at Örebro University Hospital have instead shown that the most accurate body temperature readings come from measurements taken by a rectal thermometer, Sveriges Radio (SR) reports.

“If you want to trust one single reading, which you often have to do in an emergency room or local health clinic, then an aural or oral thermometer isn’t accurate enough. It doesn’t really work in practice,” Örebro chief physician Hans Holmberg, one of the study’s authors, told SR.

Measuring body temperature in the ear is complicated by the presence of wax and hair in the aural passage.

Using an oral thermometer can be problematic because it can be hard for patients to really hold their mouths closed for a sufficient length of time.

A total of 323 patients participated in the study, which was carried out from 2007 to 2008 and compared the repeatability of measurements taken from aural and oral thermometers with readings from rectal thermometers.

“The results imply that neither of the [oral or aural] tested thermometers constitutes a satisfying alternative to rectal thermometers,” the study concludes.

In the wake of the study, which is published in Läkartidningen, a trade journal of the Swedish Medical Association, the country’s Medical Products Agency (Läkemedelsverket) has promised to review their recommendations to Swedish healthcare practitioners.

Story continues below…

“Now that this has been brought up, and these people in Örebro have persisted with their testing and produced a foundation, we’ll take it into consideration,” the agency’s Sven Jacobson told the radio station.

TT/David Landes (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

14:54 October 15, 2009 by craicen
This should have been revealed at the Pride Festival.
15:14 October 15, 2009 by jack sprat
Well the poor old pets have to take it up the Khyber Pass when they go to the vets so why not their owners as well.

I think its already common practise in quite a few places.

Reminds me of the nurse who was about to take a patients temperature, only to find she was holding a pen in her hand.

My God says she,"Some R soles got my thermometer".
15:24 October 15, 2009 by BrittInSweden
If they can't tell I have a fever from a thermometer in my mouth then I'm not ill enough and don't need medical attention.
15:32 October 15, 2009 by peropaco
Well, isnt that the way they did it way back in the days? I can see more and more people lining up to at the doctors office to take their temperature ;-D))
16:28 October 15, 2009 by eZee.se
"Using an oral thermometer can be problematic because it can be hard for patients to really hold their mouths closed for a sufficient length of time."

TheLocal made a slight mistake, the actual paragraph is (or should be) :

"Using an oral thermometer can be problematic because it can be hard for FEMALE patients to really hold their mouths closed for a sufficient length of time."

And in other news, male gay people around Stockholm have suddenly taken ill from a mysterious fever and have queued up outside all hospitals....

(sits back and waits for the people without humor to flame)
17:09 October 15, 2009 by mo aj
ya cos nowadays people are really hot from behind
19:12 October 15, 2009 by jack sprat
Just hope they dont use the same thermometer for both jobs,...oral and rectal.

Ugh.....Doesn't bear thinking about, even if the nurse has wiped the brown stuff on her gown before shoving it in your gob.

Er,nurse,...Please don't bother,I'm feeling much better already.
19:23 October 15, 2009 by zircon
Old fashioned perhaps, to determine whether someone has a fever or not, if e.g. you take a look at his or her lips. And what happened to the hand on the forehead?
19:27 October 15, 2009 by powerofknowledge

The rectum is more vascularized (more bloodvessels) than other places usedd in taking temp

thats why
18:23 October 16, 2009 by DamnImmigrant
I guess Dr. Ben Dover was correct.
11:32 November 2, 2009 by bezjaj
Is this news, or gay activism?
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