|Test to be performed - Measuring body temperature rectally
Traditional mercury-filled or digital rectal thermometer
- Rectal temperature can be taken with the patient lying on one side and the hips flexed.
- Wearing exam gloves, lubricate the thermometer and insert it into the rectum 3-4 cm (1 ½ in).
- Remove the thermometer after 3 minutes and read. Alternatively, a digital thermometer can be used with a lubricated probe cover.
- Document your findings.
- Most experts agree that this method of taking a patient’s temperature is the most accurate.
- Temperatures taken rectally tend to be 0.7 to 0.9 °F higher than those taken orally.