'Striking' Differences in BP When Wrong Cuff Size Is Used!
Strong new evidence on the need to use an appropriately sized cuff in blood pressure (BP) measurement has come from the cross-sectional randomized trial Cuff(SZ). The study found that in people in whom a small adult cuff was appropriate, systolic BP readings were on average 3.6 mm Hg lower when a regular adult size cuff was used. However, systolic readings were on average 4.8 mm Hg higher when a regular cuff was used in people who required a large adult cuff and 19.5 mm Hg higher in those needing an extra-large cuff based on their mid-arm circumference.
@tathoi people who required an extra-large cuff and were measured with a regular cuff had an average BP of 144/86.7 mm Hg, which is in the stage 2 hypertension range. But when the correct size cuff was used, the average BP was 124.5/79.3 mm Hg, or in the prehypertensive range. Overall, the overestimation of BP due to using too small a cuff misclassified 39% of people as being hypertensive, while the underestimation of BP due to using a cuff that was too large missed 22% of people with hypertension.