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A quick swipe takes child's temperature

 A quick swipe takes child's temperature
The Exergen Temporal Scanner thermometer measures core body temperture. (Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)

There was a time when loving parents stuck a glass tube of mercury in their children's mouths to gauge their health. Imagine that. Thermometers have come a long way.

The newest Exergen Corp. thermometer, called the Smart Glow, is nearly silent and can be used in the dark, and the ailing child or adult need not be awake.

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To operate, a person swipes the TemporalScanner Thermometer across the forehead and the temperature appears in a small, lighted space on the handle.

The temperature is being measured over the temporal artery, which the maker says accurately reflects the body's temperature. It likely will read higher than temperatures taken in the armpit.

The thermometer stores up to eight temperatures for tracking a fever. It runs on a 9-volt battery. There's also a professional version, used in schools, hospitals and doctors' offices. The home version is sold at drug stores and major chain stores and costs about $50.

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