Measurement of blood viscosity using a pressure-scanning capillary viscometer

Sehyun Shin, Yunhee Ku, Myung Su Park, Jang Soo Suh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


A newly designed pressure-scanning capillary viscometer is extended to measure the viscosity of whole blood over a range of shear rates without the use of anticoagulants in a clinical setting. In the present study, a single measurement of pressure variation with time replaces the flow rate and pressure drop measurements that are usually required for the operation of a capillary tube viscometer. Using a pressure transducer and capillary, we measured the variation of pressure flowing through capillary tube with respect to time, p(t), from which viscosity and the shear rate were mathematically calculated. For water and anticoagulant-added bloods, there was an excellent agreement found between the results from the pressure scanning capillary viscometer and those from a commercially available rotating viscometer. Also, the pressure-scanning capillary viscometer measured the viscosity of whole blood without heparin or EDTA. This new method overcomes the drawbacks of conventional viscometers in the measurement of whole blood viscosity. First, the pressure-scanning capillary viscometer can accurately and consistently measure the whole blood viscosity over a range of shear rates in less than 2 min without any anticoagulants. Second, this design provides simplicity (i.e., ease of operation, no moving parts, and disposable) and low cost.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)467-470
Number of pages4
JournalClinical Hemorheology and Microcirculation
Issue number3-4
Publication statusPublished - 2004
Externally publishedYes


  • Blood
  • Capillary viscometer
  • Pressure
  • Shear rate
  • Viscosity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Hematology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)


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