The American Heart Association has updated its 2005 statement on blood pressure measurement. Among the highlights, published in Hypertension:
- For office BP measurement, oscillometric devices can limit the human error seen with auscultatory methods. An automated device that can average three or more readings is the preferred approach; leaving the patient alone may help ensure that he or she doesn’t talk during the measurement.
- For self-measurement at home, a clinician should first check the upper-arm cuff for accuracy.
The statement also includes useful tables outlining steps for proper in-office, home, and ambulatory BP measurement; algorithms for screening for white-coat and masked hypertension; and special considerations for measuring BP in children, pregnant women, older adults, obese patients, and those with arrhythmias.