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All my life I've had my blood pressure taken via a cuff and bulb on my upper arm. Recently, a medical staff member took it by using a small device on my wrist. (not to be confused with a pulse oxygen meter clipped onto a finger)

Anyone else experience this? How accurate is this method?
 

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We've been using them a lot in Home health and hospice. Nice to have the LCD screen readout and they don't run the risk of skin tears on old persons paper thin skin like the old sphygmanomometers. If I got an unbelievable BP I would check the other arm. If the pulse is very week it might not be able to take a reading.
 

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Some of the cheaper models such as at Walmart or through catalogs aren't always accurate, but a good model is usually pretty spot on. I'd much prefer it because the nurse in my doctor's office pumps that thing up until it almost pinches your arm off, lol! :D

Like GMB said, sometimes they don't pick up weak or low pressures as well as the more sensitive cuff type.
 

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The wrist cuffs are quick & easy. But to be accurate, your arm must be at chest level.
Cuff & steth'scope are most accurate.
 

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In recent years I have developed PAD (peripheral artery disease). The preferred upper arm cuff squeezes my arm excruciatingly tight and painful. My blood pressure reads high enough with the upper arm cuff to warrant meds but reads lower with the wrist type. Naturally I prefer using the wrist one. After my last appointment when I was told the wrist cuff was not accurate, we bought an automatic blood pressure cuff which I cannot tolerate. My husband uses both, and the readings are nearly the same. :hrm:
 

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Had 2 dif Dr's tell me wrist meter wasn't accurate. BTW I got a BNIB Omron BP meter off FC. Am thrilled w/it.
 

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The short answer is...it depends.

For some people it will be accurate enough so long as the cuff is applied correctly and the arm is positioned correctly and the device is a good one.

Even with a good machine and good technique, though, for some people the readings may not be a good reflection of the true blood pressure (the pressure against which the heart has to pump to push blood around the body - a measure of the heart's workload).

People with circulatory problems whose blood vessels in the forearms and wrist are narrowed/smaller are less likely to get accurate readings since reduced blood flow affects the accuracy.
 

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I monitor my blood pressure closely.. I have both the digital wrist unit and a normal Sphygmomanometer cuff type unit..

They both work fine but I hate having to replace batteries on the digital one.
 

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The wrist B/P cuffs can be accurate BUT depends on the brand and proper use, feet need to be flat on the floor, wrist at chest level and no moving.
I always tell my patients to take their B/P cuff (whatever kind) with to doctors office and have them take the B/P with their cuff and their's.
 

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Any B/P is only as good as the operator! User error can happen with either.
Even the cuff method needs a properly calibrated gauge! If you don't hear well, you can miss the numbers too.

If you use good technique... either one will monitor whether you are remaining stable or outside your "norm".

Debbie
 
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