Taking blood pressure measurements at home.

I purchased a new blood pressure monitor the other day. It says that for the most accurate reading, I should rest for 15 minutes, not eat or drink for 30 minutes and have my legs resting on the floor. How can this represent an accurate measurement of BP? Is it just a limitation of the automated machines? I believe that I’ve seen similar instructions on other monitors.

I think that this is the right forum since I’m not asking for medical advice but if a mod disagrees, I won’t object.

My BP instructions said to sit up straight, both feet flat on the floor, using the left arm at heart level, take the blood pressure. All these instructions, compared to the procedure at the doctor’s office, makes one wonder just how accurate any BP reading really is. How many people who actually don’t have high BP are on meds for blood pressure?

Your blood pressure is very fluid and fluctuates slightly minute by minute and greatly by the demands made upon your heart.

The monitors are trying to get a consistent reading not affected by activity or body position.

High blood pressure is not usually diagnosed by ONE high reading. Everyone has heard of white coat hypertension.

If you follow the directions and get high readings, then face it, you have high blood pressure and are going to have to do something about it.

Taking your BP at home is useful only if it is done under the similar conditions to those in the doctor’s office. Your nurse will measure your BP on your left arm, while comfortably seated and relaxed with your feet on the floor, and you’ll want your measurement at home to be a valid comparison with that in your doctor’s office. The range of numbers considered acceptable are based on readings measured under those conditions.

All the home BP machine is doing is asking that you monitor yourself under constant conditions.