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How To Take Blood Pressure


andybonse
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hello,

I was stood up and extended my arm and rested it on a lamp lol, my bp was 84/67 which is very abnormal for me, so I moved my arm and then tried again and it was 120/70,

I guess the position of your arm like the height of it and not if at heart level can cause wrong readings?

Whats the best way to measure standing BP?

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I stack up some pillows and rest it at about heart level. Sometimes...well quite a bit actually, it just errors out when I am standing....that may be a pulse pressure rather than a blood pressure issue.

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I was told that when using an arm-cuff, you should measure your standing BP while your arm is horizontally supported (preferably on someone's shoulder - supposing the person supporting your arm is slightly shorter than you) so that your arm is at mid sternal level (heart level). That's how the nurses measured my BP during my stress tests - I had 4 stress tests and 4 different nurses ;) and they all used the same "procedure".

I believe things are different when using a wrist-cuff but I can't comment as I've never used one.

Alex

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I just rest my arm extended out, palm facing up. For whatever reason my monitor gives me a error if I just let my arm hang. I have my monitor set to take three consecutive readings for accuracy. It is a pain and takes much longer, but cuts down on errors that could cause a faint.

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That's how I measure my BP too. I have two blood pressure monitors, one for each place, and one is much more exacting than the other -- but I also extend my arm, palm up, preferably supported near heart level. Mine fluctuates wildly, but beeps when the position is off.

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Here is a link illustrating proper blood pressure measurement for both standing and sitting. It states that a systolic pressure taken on an unsupported arm (arm at side) while standing can erroneously be 6-10 mm Hg higher than in an arm that is properly supported.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2911816/#!po=40.9091

When my docs do the poor mans tilt they support my arm, but, like you Liz, during my TTT my arm was at my side. Odd...it would certainly make sense to standardize it (!?!) If you are having wide swings in BP, they should show up either way though.

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Liz, Peace...and everyone else actually,

Did you guys have regular BP measurements during your TTT - with an arm-cuff? My BP was monitored in a beat-by-beat fashion with a device fit over my fingers. I was told that it's more accurate and it monitors all of the fluctuations during the tilt.

Peace, thanks for sharing that article.

Alex

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Alex,

Yes I had the regular arm cuff monitoring. The beat by beat measurement would have been MUCH better! My BP was only monitored every few minutes and if it wasn't for me grabbing my docs arm and telling her how awful I felt at that moment, she might not have gotten a measure just before I passed out. She triggered it manually then.

I'd be curious to know which method is used at other places too.

*just before my tilt the nurse was going to start me on a saline drip. As she was hooking it up, I said "oh, no...don't do that!!". Lol She had no idea that it might affect the outcome. Obviously, I didn't have it done at an autonomic centre... ;)

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When I had my tilt table test done at Mayo, the table had an armrest offshoot that my arm with the cuff on it was strapped to

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