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The first cardiac instruments allowed physicians to augment their clinical findings by recording and analysing the pulse.

The BCS Museum has two types of sphygmographs in its collection, the Dudgeon Sphygmograph, 1882, and the Jacquet’s Sphygmograph, 1910.

The Dudgeon Sphygmograph, 1882. Invented in 1802 by Robert Ellis Dudgeon, this eminently portable aparatus was the standard method for over 20 years for recording the rhythm and wave form of the arterial pulse. The movement of the stylus was recorded on a strip of smoked paper.

Jacquet’s Sphygmograph, 1910. Made in Switzerland for Jacquet of Paris, to record the radial pulse with provision for two other channels, recording on smoked paper, using the design of the Dudgeon sphygmograph (1882).