Supralingual temperatures compared to tympanic and rectal temperatures


temperature, thermometer, tympanic thermometer, rectal thermometer


Objective: To evaluate the validity, reliability, sensitivity, and specificity of the PaciTemp[C] supralingual digital pacifier thermometer as compared to the Thermoscan Instant[C] tympanic and glass-mercury rectal thermometers. Method: Eighty-one children under the age of 2 years had temperatures taken sequentially at three body sites: supralingual, tympanic, and rectal. Corrections were calculated between the readings of the three types of thermometers. Percentage of agreement was done to examine sensitivity and specificity. Results: Using the glass-mercury measurement as the standard, both the supralingual and tympanic measurements showed an overall specificity of 62.8% and sensitivity of 63.3%. Correlation between rectal and supralingual was 0.62, and correlation between rectal and tympanic was 0.71. Conclusions: The Paci-Temp[C] provides temperature readings that are similar to the tympanic method as compared to the rectal method. Further research on at-home thermometers is needed.

Original Publication Citation

Beckstrand, R. L., Wilshaw, R., Moran S., & Schaalje, G. B. (1996). Supralingual oral temperatures compared to tympanic and rectal temperatures. Pediatric Nursing, 22(5), 436-438.

Document Type

Peer-Reviewed Article

Publication Date


Permanent URL


Pediatric Nursing





University Standing at Time of Publication

Full Professor