How is blood pressure (BP) measured accurately?

Updated: Feb 22, 2019
  • Author: Matthew R Alexander, MD, PhD; Chief Editor: Eric H Yang, MD  more...
  • Print
Answer

The patient should rest quietly for at least 5 minutes before the measurement. Blood pressure should be measured in both the supine and sitting positions, auscultating with the bell of the stethoscope. As the improper cuff size may influence blood pressure measurement, a wider cuff is preferable, particularly if the patient’s arm circumference exceeds 30 cm. Although somewhat controversial, the common practice is to document phase V (a disappearance of all sounds) of Korotkoff sounds as the diastolic pressure.


Did this answer your question?
Additional feedback? (Optional)
Thank you for your feedback!