adequate blood pressure measurement


Many times, physicians request blood pressure measurements at home because medication adjustments are required or because the blood pressure figures during the consultation are not adequate. I write this blog so the people who have a blood pressure monitor at home or who take it in another way, know the proper way to monitor blood pressure from home.

Preparing the equipment to take the blood pressure

In case you have a blood pressure monitor at home, the following recommendations should be taken into account:

Verify that the equipment is properly validated by the corresponding entities.
In case of using automatic equipment, wrist or finger devices are not recommended.
Make sure that the cuff fits the arm, this implies that it is not too small or too big.
Remember to regularly calibrate the equipment at least once a year.
Verify that the equipment is properly charged or connected to a source of electricity.

Let’s take blood pressure

Now that the equipment is prepared, the following are the recommendations so that the person can take blood pressure in the correct way either with a personal blood pressure monitor or in a place where this service is provided:

Being in a quiet space (without noise).
Be seated without having your legs crossed, with your back straight, your feet should be in contact with the floor, also place your forearm on a flat surface such as a table at heart level, at least maintain this position for 5 minutes before take the blood pressure.
It is recommended to take blood pressure in the right arm, although it is not prohibited to do it in the left arm.
The cuff should be placed on the middle third of the arm, it should be snug but not tight.
DO NOT take blood pressure over the clothes
DO NOT smoke in the last 30 minutes.
DO NOT have caffeine or stimulant drinks in the last 30 minutes.
DO NOT exercise in the last 30 minutes.
DO NOT talk or move your arm while taking your blood pressure.
Have an empty bladder.
If you need a blood pressure diary, you should take your blood pressure at the same time every day in the morning and in the afternoon. Remember to write down the time and date of your blood pressure.
In case of needing several blood pressure measurements, the blood pressure should be taken in the same arm and position, each blood pressure measurement should be separated by a period of one minute.

Go to the ER if …

Go to the emergency room if blood pressure is above 180 (the systolic) or above 120 (the diastolyc) (this applies with either of the two values above that level).


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