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Fibre Bragg Grating Based Interface Pressure Sensor for Compression Therapy

Bradbury, James A.; Zhang, Qimei; Hernandez Ledezma, Francisco U.; Correia, Ricardo; Korposh, Serhiy; Hayes-Gill, Barrie R.; Tamoué, Ferdinand; Parnham, Alison; McMaster, Simon A.; Morgan, Stephen P.

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James A. Bradbury

Qimei Zhang

Francisco U. Hernandez Ledezma

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Professor of Photonics Instrumentation

Professor of Electronic Systems and Medical Devices

Ferdinand Tamoué

Simon A. McMaster


Compression therapy is widely used as the gold standard for management of chronic venous insufficiency and venous leg ulcers, and the amount of pressure applied during the compression therapy is crucial in supporting healing. A fibre optic pressure sensor using Fibre Bragg Gratings (FBGs) is developed in this paper to measure sub-bandage pressure whilst removing crosssensitivity due to strain in the fibre and temperature. The interface pressure is measured by an FBG encapsulated in a polymer and housed in a textile to minimise discomfort for the patient. The repeatability of a manual fabrication process is investigated by fabricating and calibrating ten sensors. A customized calibration setup consisting of a programmable translation stage and a weighing scale gives sensitivities in the range 0.4–1.5 pm/mmHg (2.6–11.3 pm/kPa). An alternative calibration method using a rigid plastic cylinder and a blood pressure cuff is also demonstrated. Investigations are performed with the sensor under a compression bandage on a phantom leg to test the response of the sensor to changing pressures in static situations. Measurements are taken on a human subject to demonstrate changes in interface pressure under a compression bandage during motion to mimic a clinical application. These results are compared to the current gold standard medical sensor using a Bland–Altman analysis, with a median bias ranging from −4.6 to −20.4 mmHg, upper limit of agreement (LOA) from −13.5 to 2.7 mmHg and lower LOA from −32.4 to −7.7 mmHg. The sensor has the potential to be used as a training tool for nurses and can be left in situ to monitor bandage pressure during compression therapy.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Feb 22, 2022
Online Publication Date Feb 24, 2022
Publication Date Mar 1, 2022
Deposit Date Feb 25, 2022
Publicly Available Date Feb 25, 2022
Journal Sensors
Publisher MDPI AG
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 22
Issue 5
Article Number 1798
Keywords Electrical and Electronic Engineering; Biochemistry; Instrumentation; Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics; Analytical Chemistry
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