ABPM tests your blood pressure over 24 hours to observe the risks to heart health. When left untreated, the damage that high blood pressure (HBP) does to your circulatory system is a significant contributing factor to heart attack, stroke and other health threats.
Ambulatory blood pressure monitoring (ABPM) involves a cuff and bladder connected to electronic sensors which detect changes in cuff pressure and allow blood pressure to be measured oscillometrically. Systolic and diastolic pressure readings are deduced from the shape of oscillometric pressure changes using an algorithm built into the measuring device. A patient’s blood pressure can be automatically measured at repeated intervals throughout the day and night, while they continue routine activities. Systolic and diastolic pressure can be plotted over time, with most devices providing average day, night and 24-hour pressures. NICE recommends recording a daytime average to confirm a diagnosis.
Welch Allyn ABPM 7100 blood pressure monitor is fitted onto the patient and automatically takes a measurement every half an hour while the patient goes about his or her normal daily activities.
Although NICE guidelines recommend that a minimum of 14 daytime readings is needed to assess average daytime blood pressure, monitoring over a full 24-hour period is useful for identifying patients whose blood pressure does not dip over the course of the day.
Patients are advised to keep a diary of what they are doing while they are wearing the device and should, at the very least, record when they went to sleep and when they woke up.
No special preparation needed.
Some clinical indications for ABPM
|Category||Systolic BP (mmHg)||Diastolic BP (mmHg)|
Daytime (or awake)
Nightime (or asleep)
The ABPM test results are NOT to be interpreted as a "stand-alone" test. The test results have to be interpreted with suitable clinical findings and additional supplemental tests/information. Your healthcare providers will explain the meaning of your tests results, based on the overall clinical scenario.
Certain medications that you may be currently taking may influence the outcome of the test. Hence, it is important to inform your healthcare provider of the complete list of medications (including any herbal supplements) you are currently taking. This will help the healthcare provider interpret your test results more accurately and avoid the chances of a misdiagnosis.
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