Research Article

Assessment of the accuracy and role of self-recorded blood pressures in the management of hypertension.

Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1982; 285 doi: (Published 11 December 1982) Cite this as: Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1982;285:1691
  1. B A Gould,
  2. H A Kieso,
  3. R Hornung,
  4. D G Altman,
  5. P M Cashman,
  6. E B Raftery


    Self-recording of the blood pressure by patients away from hospital or office ("home blood pressure") has been advocated as providing a better estimate of "true" blood pressure. The reliability of home blood-pressure recording has been assessed only by standard indirect methods which themselves are subject to considerable error and variability. The accuracy of self-recorded blood pressures was therefore assessed in 57 patients with essential hypertension by comparison with simultaneous measurements of clinic blood pressures and with intra-arterial blood pressures recorded at home and at hospital. Home systolic blood pressures showed good agreement with clinic and intra-arterial pressures, but home diastolic blood pressures overestimated intra-arterial pressures, as did clinic diastolic pressures. The clinic and home diastolic pressures showed good agreement. There was considerable variability in individual differences comparing the indirect and intra-arterial methods, though the two indirect methods showed much closer agreement. This study suggests that home blood pressures are as accurate as clinic readings but may be recorded more frequently and thus provide more useful information. Neither is likely to approximate the intra-arterial blood pressure.