The most frequently asked questions about blood pressure measurement
What time of the day should I take the measurement?
Ideally twice a day. One measurement in the morning and another in the evening when you have come to rest. In order to get comparable measurements, you should always measure at the same time. Immediately before taking a measurement, you should sit down and let your body calm down for five minutes.
Which device is suitable for the measurement?
For measurements at home, meaningful results can be obtained through blood pressure monitors with a cuff for the upper arm. Although devices are also available for convenient wrist measurements, the results may be less accurate. If you are unsure, you can try different devices to see if the measurement is accurate.
On which arm should I take the measurement?
Usually it makes no difference on which arm you measure. However, you can test both arms for the first few days and then choose the pessimistic approach - e.g. continue measuring on the arm that shows the higher numbers.
What else do I have to consider when measuring?
Sit up straight and give your body five minutes to calm down. You should be relaxed because stress or excitement can have a short-term effect on your blood pressure. Place both legs on the floor and place your hand on the table with the palm facing up. While the device is measuring, you should sit quietly and not speak. If you want to take another measurement, wait for at least three minutes before you continue with the next measurement.
How do I correctly interpret my numbers?
In our blood pressure evaluation you can enter your numbers and have them evaluated.Blood pressure calculator and evaluation
How does blood pressure measurement work?
A widely known method is the measurement with an upper arm cuff. This method is called "indirect" measurement. In contrast, there is also the "direct measurement". This is an invasive method that involves inserting a cannula into the vein.
Direct measurement of blood pressure
The direct measurement method is used in intensive care medicine. The blood is passed through a tube into a pressure transducer via a cannula in the artery. This device then measures systolic and diastolic blood pressure and displays the numbers on a monitor.
The advantage of this method is that long-term monitoring is possible. For instance, this is necessary during surgeries.
Indirect measurement of blood pressure
The most common method of measurement is the blood pressure cuff. This measurement has become established for personal use as well as for examination by a doctor because it is easy to carry out and, compared to direct measurement, is non-invasive.
Blood pressure cuffs for the upper arm or wrist are available for this measurement method. Both work in a similar way: the cuff is inflated until the blood flow is stopped. The measurement can then take place.
How does a blood pressure cuff work?
The blood pressure cuff is usually pulled over the upper arm and inflated with air. It is pumped until the artery is squeezed and the blood flow stops. The external pressure generated by the cuff is now higher than the internal pressure generated by the heart.
The cuff is then slowly loosened again until the cuff pressure and arterial pressure equalize and the blood begins to flow again. This creates a flowing noise that is called a Korotkoff sound. At this point, the systolic blood pressure can be measured on the cuff.
The cuff is now loosened further until the blood is free to flow again. As soon as the Korotkoff sound disappears, the diastolic blood pressure can be read.