​What is Ambulatory Blood Pressure Monitoring?

Your blood pressure is measured frequently by a doctor in the clinic. At times, it may appear higher due to nervousness or anxiety at being in a clinical setting. Blood pressure readings can also vary according to your physical activity.

Ambulatory blood pressure monitoring or carrying a monitoring device with you allows your blood pressure to be measured at regular intervals in a day, whether you are awake or asleep. The information recorded on this device allows your doctor to study your blood pressure in a normal environment.

What is the Purpose of this Test?

It is a useful and reliable method to evaluate the type of hypertension a person may have. It is also used to assess the effectiveness of high blood pressure medication on a patient.

Before the Test

  • There is no need to fast
  • Continue taking your medication unless otherwise instructed by your doctor
  • Wear loose-fitting clothing that is preferably two-pieced (e.g. shirt or blouse and pants or skirt)
  • No admission is required

During the Test

Your height and weight will be taken before the test to determine your body mass index (BMI). A cardiac technologist will attach a blood pressure cuff to one of your arms and connect it to a portable blood pressure recorder strapped to your waist. The blood pressure cuff will inflate at pre-set intervals throughout a 24-hour period. You will be required to wear this device continuously.

You can go about your normal activities, but do avoid engaging in strenuous exercises or removing the cuff. Avoid showering, swimming or engaging in activites that can make the device wet. For maximum accuracy, do not bend your arm and try to relax when the blood pressure cuff is inflating. A daily record sheet will be given to you to record your daily activities and highlight any symptoms you experience during this period.

Is the Test Safe?

There are generally no risks involved in ambulatory blood pressure monitoring.

However, some patients may experience slight discomfort or itchiness where the blood pressure cuff inflates. Please inform the technologist or doctor if you encounter such discomfort. We strongly advise that you do not remove or tamper with the device as this could affect the validity of the test.

When Will I Know the Results?

The recordings will be analysed and your doctor will inform you of your results during your next appointment.

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