What Is Blood Pressure And How Is It Measured
The heart supplies the organs and tissues of the body with blood. With every beat, it pumps blood into the large blood vessels of the circulatory system. As the blood moves around the body, it puts pressure on the walls of the vessels. Blood pressure readings are made up of two values:
- Systolic blood pressure is the pressure when the heart beats while the heart muscle is contracting and pumping oxygen-rich blood into the blood vessels.
- Diastolic blood pressure is the pressure on the blood vessels when the heart muscle relaxes. The diastolic pressure is always lower than the systolic pressure.
Blood pressure is measured in units of millimeters of mercury . The readings are always given in pairs, with the upper value first, followed by the lower value.
So someone who has a reading of 132/88 mmHg has a
- systolic blood pressure of 132 mmHg, and a
- diastolic blood pressure of 88 mmHg.
Qardioarm Wireless Blood Pressure Monitor
The QardioArm wireless blood pressure monitor not only measures users systolic and diastolic blood pressure, but it also monitors the users heart rate and has an irregular heartbeat detection.
Users can use their Apply Health or the S Health apps in conjuncture with the Qardio App to monitor data, and thanks to this devices compact and elegant design, users can take and use this device anywhere.
Who Invented The Manual Sphygmomanometer
The invention of the device we know today as the blood pressure monitor came in stages, with many inventors responsible for the general ideas that brought us this basic building block of health.
Some of the earliest approaches were undertaken by Stephen Hales, an 18th century clergyman and philanthropist who took a deep interest in science an interest that led him at one point to research the real force of the blood in the arteries. As part of his research, Hales conducted tests on the sap in vegetables as well as tests on horses and other animals.
According to a 1977 retrospective written by Jeremy Booth for Proceedings of the Royal Society of Medicine, it took centuries to figure out a repeatable way of testing blood pressure. Haless experiments helped set the stage for less invasive approaches.
In the 1850s, German physiologist Karl von Vierordt came up with the first sphygmograph: a weight-based system for testing blood pressure using a persons radial artery. While complex, it was a major upgrade from the kymograph, an invasive predecessor to the sphygmograph developed less than a decade earlier.
The device was further improved by Frances Étienne-Jules Marey, who bettered its accuracy, if not its complexity.
The device found success in the United States and globally thanks to Harvey Cushing, a pioneering neurosurgeon who encountered both Riva-Rocci and his device on a trip to Italy, according to a 2001 article in the Archives of Pathology & Laboratory Medicine.
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How Does A Blood Pressure Monitor Work
Blood pressure is measured using a sphygmomanometer, or blood pressure monitor. It consists of an inflatable cuff thats wrapped around your arm, roughly level with your heart, and a monitoring device that measures the cuffs pressure.
The monitor measures two pressures: systolic, and diastolic. Systolic pressure is higher, occurring when your heart beats and pushes blood through the arteries, and diastolic pressure is measured when your heart is resting and filling with blood. So, for example, your blood pressure might be 120 over 80.
Blood pressure monitors may be manual or digital, but home monitors are usually digital and the whole measurement process is automatic apart from placing the cuff around your arm.
The cuff then inflates until it fits tightly around your arm, cutting off your blood flow, and then the valve opens to deflate it. As the cuff reaches your systolic pressure, blood begins to flow around your artery. This creates a vibration thats detected by the meter, which records your systolic pressure. In a traditional analogue sphygmomanometer, the blood sounds are detected by the doctor using a stethoscope.
As the cuff continues to deflate, it reaches your diastolic pressure, and the vibration stops. The meter senses this, and records the pressure again.
Tips For Checking Your Own Blood Pressure
There are certain factors that can cause blood pressure to temporarily rise. For example, blood pressure normally rises as a result of:
- Certain medicines
Try to avoid as many of these factors as you can when taking your blood pressure. Also, try to measure your blood pressure at about the same time each day. Your doctor may want you to check your blood pressure several times during the day to see if it fluctuates.
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Blood Pressure Monitoring At Home
Many people monitor their blood pressure at home. They often do this to manage or treat a certain health condition. If you monitor your blood pressure at home, keep a record, or log, of the measurements. The record shows your doctor how your blood pressure changes throughout the day. If you take medicines to control your blood pressure, it will help document if they are working. Measuring your blood pressure at home is a good way to take part in managing your health.
What Is A Manual Sphygmomanometer
Manual sphygmomanometers, which work by tightening a strap or cuff around a wearers forearm and slowly increasing pressure, are effective at measuring systolic pressure .
When combined with another basic building block of manual measurement, the stethoscope, they can also help to measure diastolic pressure the pressure exerted between beats. Both numbers are used to determine a patients reading.
Two types of manual sphygmomanometers are common: the mercury sphygmomanometer, which measures blood pressure by tracking the height of a column of mercury and tends to be used for clinical trials and in testing high-risk patients and the aneroid sphygmomanometer, which relies on a small pressure gauge. Both devices use either a rubber or silicone pump.
Due to its small size and relative ease of use, the aneroid model has become ubiquitous, and its the most common way to test a persons vital signs, as well as to check for the potential of high blood pressure that can cause heart disease and stroke.
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Are Wrist Blood Pressure Monitors Accurate
Many studies and medical experts suggest wrist blood pressure monitors arent accurate. In fact, the American Heart Association says wrist and finger monitors arent recommended because they yield less reliable readings.
In a 2020 study in Hypertension, researchers from seven universities and the World Hypertension League considered more than 970 home blood pressure devices sold by nearly 60 online retailers. They found 95% hadnt been validated for accuracyPicone D, et al. Nonvalidated home blood pressure devices dominate the online marketplace in Australia. Hypertension. 2020 75:1293-1599. . Validated monitors have been found to give accurate and reliable readings compared to clinical standards, says Andrew Feda, M.D., a geriatrician at One Medical in New York City. The validation process usually entails comparing the monitors reading to readings obtained by the traditional method used by a doctor in an office .
The American Medical Association and the National Opinion Research Center at the University of Chicago developed a process to validate BP devices for clinical accuracy, says Dr. Feda. Of the 162 wrist cuff-specific devices, only 8% had been validated, and none of the 530 wristband-style wearables have been validated.
Common reasons for inaccuracies in wrist blood pressure monitor readings include:
How Do I Measure My Arm Circumference
To determine your arm size, use a cloth tape measure and place midway between your elbow and your shoulder around the circumference of your upper arm. Wrap the tape measure evenly around your arm. Do not pull the tape tight. Note the precise measurement in inches. Determine which size cuff is best for you, then purchase a home blood pressure monitor with that size cuff included.
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Are The Readings Different Between An Upper Arm Blood Pressure Monitor And A Wrist Blood Pressure Monitor
It is quite possible that your readings may be different from your upper arm to your wrist as blood pressure varies throughout the human body. All Omron blood pressure monitors, whether upper arm or wrist, are validated in the same manner and have the same accuracy specifications. In terms of which type of blood pressure monitor is best for you, we recommend that you discuss this with your doctor, based on your individual needs.
For more information on Omrons line of upper arm and wrist home blood pressure monitors, click below:
Best Blood Pressure Cuffs And Monitors: Bottom Line
The heart is one of the most important organs in the human body, so taking proper measures to protect it is more than a big deal. Home health tools can help make monitoring your health stats easy so that you can take the initiative over your overall health and wellness.
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Maintenance Tips To Lengthen The Device Life Span
There are many types of maintenance, but the maintenance of medical equipment such as blood pressure monitor falls under two types which include preventive and corrective maintenance.
The preventive maintenance minimizes total replacement or emergency repair.
This maintenance type lowers down expenses and provides you with greater investment return over time.
While corrective maintenance identifies, isolates, and repairs the devices faults, this maintenance type is used to repair devices straightway before more significant damages occur.
Here are some maintenance tips to lengthen the device life span
Train users about the maintenance
This is a very important step, making all users of the blood pressure monitor to properly understand how best to maintain their devices.
For example, some devices are not supposed to come in contact with water, or fire, some are to be sterilized, cleaned, and returned to their different boxes or cases immediately after use.
Some untrained users may cause a device to breakdown when they do not understand how properly to use it.
Carry out a routine check
In device maintenance, a routine check is very necessary because it helps to lengthen its life span. It also helps to note when the device begins to malfunction before developing some faults. Routine check helps to make sure the device is in perfect condition and ready for the activities of the day.
Keep the device clean and maintain a clean working environment
Off the device when not in use
What Are The Different Styles Of Cuffs
- D-Ring Cuff: A d-ring cuff is a standard type of blood pressure cuff that you would usually see in your doctors office. It is a cuff where the user loops one end of the cuff through a metal ring, then fastens it to the arm. D-ring cuffs come in different sizes of small, standard and large. It is important to pick out the right size cuff based on your individual arm circumference. Please see the questions in this Omron FAQ regarding the different types of cuffs and how to measure your arm circumference.
- Expandable Cuff: The Omron ComFit Cuff is a pre-formed upper arm cuff that expands to fit both regular and large sized arms . It is designed to ensure more comfortable, accurate readings.
- Wrist Cuff: A wrist cuff is similar to an upper arm cuff however you can wrap it around your wrist instead of your upper arm.
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When To Check Blood Pressure
If youre using a blood pressure monitor on your doctors advice, he or she should tell you when to take readings. As a rule, though, you should take them at the same time of day on each occasion, so youre comparing like with like.
Take a few readings each time, a couple of minutes apart, and calculate the average to make the figures more representative. And if your blood pressure monitor doesnt store your readings for you, jot them down in a notebook to get an idea of long-term trends.
Bupa . High blood pressure. Retrieved from www.bupa.co.uk/health-information/heart-blood-circulation/high-blood-pressure-hypertension
American Heart Association . Monitoring your blood pressure at home. Retrieved from www.heart.org/en/health-topics/high-blood-pressure/understanding-blood-pressure-readings/monitoring-your-blood-pressure-at-home
How Does A Manual Blood Pressure Monitor Work
This type of blood pressure monitor is one in which you or someone who helps you insufflate by pressing the knob of the blood pressure monitor to cause the cuff to fill with air. Once it has been filled enough, with a stethoscope you will hear the beeps that mark the maximum and minimum blood pressure.
Carrying out this process in a correct way supposes some training so that the measurement is good. One factor that you have to consider when going to a professional to measure your blood pressure is what is known as the white coat syndrome or hypertension . Tension increases due to the nervousness of going to a consultation and being in front of a doctor.
This would be a false diagnosis of hypertension, however you can avoid it with self-measurement of blood pressure at various times of the day and for several days. With these data, your doctor will be able to make an assessment and establish a more reliable diagnosis.
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What Is The Warranty On An Omron Home Blood Pressure Monitor
The warranty period depends on which Omron model you purchase or own. Warranty periods on the monitor itself are generally anywhere from 1-5 years, and are based on the life expectancy of the unit. Most cuffs or other accessories are generally 1 year. Please check the instruction manual for your specific unit. Electronic versions of the instruction manuals can be found in the Omron Product Support & Solutions Center.
How Do Blood Pressure Monitors Really Work
31 January 2020- Blood pressure monitors are common on both hospital wards and in outpatient areas. They are in use every day, yet many people still do not know the technique behind them. It is high time that we learn how these blood pressure measuring devices actually work.
It is not very difficult to measure a persons blood pressure. The classic method, which can be traced back to Italian physician Scipione Riva-Roccis auscultatory technique, requires only a stethoscope and an arm cuff hooked up to a manometer.
The arm cuff is pumped full of air, cutting off the circulation in the brachial artery, and the pressure is then released gradually. If it drops below the systolic blood pressure level, the blood flow through the artery will return. However, the blood flow will be turbulent for as long as the artery remains partially compressed. This results in a muffled, pulsating noise phenomenon known as Korotkoff sounds, which can be counted by placing a stethoscope on the brachial artery or by integrating a microphone into the measurement cuff. Systolic blood pressure readings can be taken from the manometer as soon as they occur. The Korotkoff sounds disappear as soon as compression of the artery is released completely and the blood can flow again smoothly. The cuff pressure as measured at this point corresponds to the diastolic blood pressure.
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Take The Initiative Over Your Health
When it comes to your health, you can never be too careful. When it comes to matters of the heart, taking the initiative can be the difference between early or late diagnoses of severe issues. Besides the usual exercise and proper diet, taking your blood pressure regularly at home can help keep your heart health in check. In fact, many doctors encourage it because high blood pressure is becoming an all too common issue.
A home blood pressure cuff is one way to take charge and keep a close eye on your heart health, and thanks to the wide variety of monitors on the market, finding one that suits your needs isnt as hard as it may sound. Moreover, most monitors are more budget-friendly than people know.
How To Use A Wireless Blood Pressure Monitor
“Checking your blood pressure at home should not be burdensome,” says Spatz. “I recommend that patients with stable hypertension take out the cuff the week prior to their appointment and measure twice a day so we can use these measurements to guide our management. Unless we are making active changes to the treatment plan, patients can put away the cuff until the next visit.”
The Withings BPM Core blood pressure cuff also includes ECG measurements.
You should talk to your doctor about what routine is right for you, but in general, here are some best practices:
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Tips For Buying A Wrist Blood Pressure Monitor
If youre unable to use an upper arm blood pressure monitor and want to purchase a wrist blood pressure device instead, there are hundreds to choose from. The first thing to do is check if its validated, meaning medical organizations have made sure it works correctly by comparing it to superior clinical standards . Dr. Feda recommends consulting the U.S. Blood Pressure Validated Device Listing website.
After you check the listing, consider the following factors:
What Is The Advantage Of Having Wireless Bluetooth Convenience
Wireless Bluetooth Convenience allows you to sync your blood pressure monitor to the free OMRON Connect app where you can store, track and share your heart health information on your smartphone, and even share it with your loved ones or doctor. The app is available for download on a variety of iOS® or Android® devices. To learn if your mobile device is compatible, visit OmronHealthcare.com/connect). And if you have Amazon® Alexa®-enabled devices, youll also want to try the Omron Health skill to help manage your heart health. Once connected, simply ask Alexa!
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