Document Detail

Wrist blood pressure overestimates blood pressure measured at the upper arm.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  15096904     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
OBJECTIVE: Whether blood pressure (BP) measured at the wrist differs from blood pressure measured at the arm is not well known. The aim of this study was to compare the BP readings obtained at the arm with those obtained at the forearm and to assess whether the wrist-arm discrepancies were related to subjects' clinical characteristics. METHODS: We measured blood pressure at the forearm and at the upper arm in 85 subjects using conventional sphygmomanometry. Wrist-arm blood pressure discrepancies were assessed in relation to gender, age, body mass index, skin-fold thickness, arm size, blood pressure level, and arterial compliance measured with the HDI/Pulsewave CR-2000. RESULTS: Blood pressure measured at the wrist consistently overestimated blood pressure taken at the arm with a mean (+/-SD) discrepancy of 8.2 +/- 9.7/9.2 +/- 6.4 mmHg. The systolic blood pressure differences were greater in men than in women (p=0.006) and, among the men, varied according to arm adiposity (positive association, p=0.01). In men, diastolic blood pressure differences correlated with diastolic blood pressure level (negative association, p=0.01). Among the women, only age (p=0.04) was a significant positive independent predictor of the wrist-arm diastolic BP differences. CONCLUSIONS: These results indicate that forearm blood pressure measurement markedly overestimates upper arm blood pressure and that the between-site difference may vary from subject to subject. Wrist blood pressure measurement is not a valid alternative to traditional measurement at the arm and its use should be discouraged.
Paolo Palatini; Daniele Longo; Gianluca Toffanin; Olivo Bertolo; Vania Zaetta; Achille C Pessina
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Comparative Study; Journal Article    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Blood pressure monitoring     Volume:  9     ISSN:  1359-5237     ISO Abbreviation:  Blood Press Monit     Publication Date:  2004 Apr 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2004-04-20     Completed Date:  2004-12-14     Revised Date:  2006-11-15    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  9606438     Medline TA:  Blood Press Monit     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  77-81     Citation Subset:  IM    
Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, University of Padova, Italy.
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MeSH Terms
Age Factors
Blood Pressure*
Blood Pressure Determination / methods
Middle Aged
Reproducibility of Results
Sex Factors
Skinfold Thickness

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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