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Home Blood Pressure Monitors - Are They Accurate?

As technology improves, new models come to market and prices fall, blood pressure monitors are increasingly a part of many people's health and healing programs. But lingering doubts remain - how accurate are they?

Studies are not numerous, but those that are available suggest a good degree of accuracy.

For example, in a major report, the US Pharmacist journal found that home monitors from the leading manufacturers performed extremely well. Stating that "accuracy should be the primary goal for device selection", it especially recommended units from Omron and A&D Medical/LifeSource. It also said that "high-quality, clinically tested monitors" came from Lumiscope, Mark of Fitness, Panasonic and Samsung.

And it commented:

The most critical function that manufacturers of home blood pressure monitors are continually refining is accuracy. This industry has historically lacked strict guidelines for manufacturing and overall performance. A device can give inaccurate data for a number of reasons. Operator error and device malfunctions are the most common. Patient counseling that reinforces the importance of correctly using and maintaining a monitor may prevent errors.

Omron HEM-780 blood pressure monitorIn fact, in some cases the accuracy of home monitors is superior to the reading from your own doctor.

The reason is of course the phenomenon of "white coat hypertension", whereby certain patients experience a degree of nervousness in the doctor's surgery, with a consequent elevation in their blood pressure readings. Back home the reading is normal.

It should also be noted that taking one's own blood pressure on a regular, frequent basis can yield important information to the doctor. And the practise of taking regular readings at home can also help hypertension sufferers to understand the importance of discipline in managing their problems.

The Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation (AAMI) sets standards for blood pressure monitors, although it is still permissible for devices that have not met these standards to be marketed. So look for a label declaring that the unit you are interested in purchasing has met the standard.

In fact, some manufacturers take pride in exceeding the AAMI standards. Thus, A&D Medical writes:

LifeSource blood pressure monitors exceed accuracy standards set by the Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation. The AAMI requires that monitors be accurate even after 10,000 inflations.

And Omron states:

All models...are clinically proven accurate. Pressure is plus or minus three millimeters of mercury or two percent of reading. Pulse is plus or minus five percent of reading. This meets or exceeds the AAMI standards.

Exercising normal levels of commonsense in their purchase, and learning how to use it correctly, consumers can feel confident that their blood pressure monitor will indeed prove accurate.

* Get up-to-date information and the latest prices on blood pressure monitors.

See also my report Guide to Buying the Best Home Blood Pressure Monitor.

And for the latest information, and to see what other customers are buying, check out the following Amazon.com best-seller lists (which are updated hourly):

* Best-Sellers in Blood Pressure Monitors

* Best-Sellers in Automatic Blood Pressure Monitors

* Best-Sellers in Arm Blood Pressure Monitors

* Best-Sellers in Wrist Blood Pressure Monitors

* Best-Sellers in Manual Blood Pressure Monitors

October 20th, 2009

 

See Also:

Reviews
LifeSource Blood Pressure Monitors
LifeSource UA-767 Auto-Inflate Blood Pressure Monitor
LifeSource UB-328 Wrist Auto Inflate Blood Pressure Monitor
Lumiscope Blood Pressure Monitors
Mark of Fitness Blood Pressure Monitors
Mark of Fitness MF-81 Wrist Blood Pressure Monitor
Omron Elite 7300W Women's Home Blood Pressure Monitor
Omron HEM-432 Manual Blood Pressure Monitor
Omron HEM-711AC Automatic Blood Pressure Monitor
Omron HEM-711DLX Automatic Blood Pressure Monitor
Omron HEM-712C Automatic Blood Pressure Monitor
Omron HEM-773AC Automatic Blood Pressure Monitor
Omron HEM-780 Auto-Inflate Blood Pressure Monitor
Omron HEM-790IT Automatic Blood Pressure Monitor
Omron Wrist Blood Pressure Monitors
Panasonic Blood Pressure Monitors
Panasonic EW3111W Precise Logic Upper Arm Blood Pressure Monitor
Samsung Blood Pressure Monitors
WrisTech Blood Pressure Monitor

Articles
Ambulatory Blood Pressure Monitors - An Introduction
Best Blood Pressure Monitors
Consumer Reports and Blood Pressure Monitors
Guide to Buying the Best Home Blood Pressure Monitor
Home Blood Pressure Monitors - Are They Accurate?
Home Blood Pressure Monitors – Selected Internet Resources
Manual Blood Pressure Monitors
Omron Blood Pressure Monitors - Why Are They So Popular?
Talking Blood Pressure Monitors
Technology Award for LifeSource Telemedicine Blood Pressure Monitors
Welch Allyn Blood Pressure Monitors
Wrist Blood Pressure Monitors - Should I Buy One?

 

 

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