Are you sure you’re taking blood pressure correctly?
- Article: Difference in blood pressure readings between arms
- Authors: Carmel Thomason is senior publishing manager, evidence resources, National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence
THIS ARTICLE WILL TELL YOU ABOUT
- Why it is important to measure blood pressure in both arms
- When reading in both arms should be measured
- New research evidence to support this practice
YOU WOULD BE LIKELY TO REFERENCE THIS ARTICLE IF YOU WERE RESEARCHING:
- Cardiovascular disease
- Systemic observations
- Blood pressure
IN WHAT SITUATIONS WILL THIS ARTICLE BE USEFUL FOR ME?
The information in this article is useful when you are involved in assessing patients for cardiovascular risk factors. This frequently happens in primary care.
QUESTIONS FOR YOUR MENTOR/TUTOR
An incorrect blood pressure technique will give an inaccurate reading. Ask you mentor to check you are carrying out the procedure correctly.
STUDENT NT DECODER
- Diastolic pressure: period during the cardiac cycle when the ventricles of the heart are relaxed and refilling with blood. Pressure in the arteries is low. Lower reading of blood pressure.
- Systolic pressure: the period during the cardiac cycle when the heart contracts. The pressure of blood against the walls of the arteries is highest during systole. This is the high number in a blood pressure reading.
- mmHg: Millimetres of mercury. The unit of measurement for blood pressure.
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