SI units, measurement instruments and the role they play in medicine.

It is not a surprise that International System of Units that is also well-known as SI continues to gain a huge popularity among physicians all over the world due to its being applied widely in various scientific and industrial fields. The system mainly consists of seven base units, two supplementary units, derived units and prefixes. As it is known, SI units of measurement play a very important role in many biological and medical sectors as well.

Despite the fact there are both mass and substance concentration units in the SI system for the certain reasons it is more convenient to keep the data in substance concentration. The point is that the certain chemical processes which take place between blood components can be described in more clear way if measurement is performed in moles. Let's consider bilirubin and serum albumin with concentrations of 0.5 mg per dl and 5.0 grams per dl respectively. These concentrations can be also presented as 6.8 and 620 per mol per liter. It is quite obvious that bilirubin concentration can be better described in terms of molars with 100-fold difference. In such a way, clinical importance level of serum bilirubin concentration (20mg per dl) in neonatology will be better reported - 340 mol per liter. As a rule, molar terms are used to express electrolytes like sodium, potassium, carbon and chloride dioxide. Nevertheless calcium, magnesium and divalent ions are still measured in mg per dl units.

There are the certain disorders in measurement methods which are used in various medical laboratories today. Many physicians have got used to measurement units which have been in use for many years in the past. Joule, for example, is considered to be unknown unit among doctors and medicals, however, it can successfully replace calorie in such sectors as dietetics and nutrition. The same situation can happen with Pascal as well. For example, blood pressure is currently measured in metric units - millimeter of mercury. Being equal to 7.5006 mm of mercury one kPa can replace metric units soon. So, in such a way 130/80 pressure will be measured as 17/11 kPa significantly simplifying measurement system.

For the reason different measurement units are used in laboratories sometimes it can take much time and significant efforts to convert the data in the proper way for each individual case. As the practice shows differences in measurement systems can lead to fatal errors and negative consequences in medicine. To avoid various misunderstandings some hospitals and pharmaceutical companies took a decision to present medical values both in SI and traditional units of measurement.

In addition, we would like to discuss measurement tools which also play a very important role in medicine when high precision is needed. Considering measurement tools the special attention should be paid to volumetric flasks which are used for keeping and measuring liquid. Usually such vessels provide highly precise liquid measurement comparing with other vessels. Machine-made measurement scales provide higher preciseness than hand-made marks. Volumetric flasks are also often used for making medical solutions or diluting a liquid. They usually come with the special stoppers at the top.

Analytical balances can be also considered as another important instrument for doctors, pharmacists and patients. The modern milligram scales providing up to 0.1-10 readability can always become a valuable solution for herbal medicine, pharmacies, drug discovery weighing applications, laboratories and universities.

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