Ambulatory blood pressure monitoring (ABPM) is a fairly new method for assessing a person’s blood pressure when in-office readings are ambiguous or irregular. Besides being used to measure wide fluctuations in blood pressure, ABPM is also used to assess the effectiveness of an anti-hypertensive treatment regiment.
ABPM is also useful in evaluating whether patients have “white coat hypertension”. “White coat hypertension” refers to when a patient experiences high blood pressure caused by the anxiety of being in a clinical situation.
In some cases it can be said that ABPM is the key to accurate resting blood pressure measurements and diagnoses. Unlike in-office monitoring, ABPM will provide the doctor with a wide range of values to better understand your condition and provide accurate diagnoses.
Services & Procedures Offered
An ABPM device consists of a blood pressure cuff that is attached to the arm and a recording device, which is roughly the size of a CD player that the patient wears on the belt. The recording device will then collect information on patient’s blood pressure periodically (usually at 15-, 30- or 60- minute intervals) over a time period of either 24 or 48 hours.
The device’s record of your blood pressure for a one- or two- day period will provide a range of variable values that the doctor can use to calculate the patient’s average blood pressure values for a full 24-hour period. This includes the hours that the patient is awake and asleep, and through a wide range of situations and activities. The average values are then used to diagnose if a patient has hypertension.