Manual Blood Pressure Techniques Essay

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Introduction

Manual blood pressure techniques are compounded with many factors that may affect the measurement (Myers, 2010). Patient anxiety and poor blood pressure measurement technique by the health professional can result in a misdiagnosis and improper drug treatment (Myers, 2010).
The mercury sphygmomanometer has been “gold-standard” for measuring blood pressure since it’s invention in 1881 (Ostchega et al, 2011). However, mercury is now considered to be an environmental risk and many hospitals and clinical practices worldwide have banned the use of mercury (Myers, 2010). There are now many mercury free alternatives to the sphygmomanometer such as the aneroid sphygmomanometer, digital monitors like the x or ambulatory blood
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Introduction

Manual blood pressure techniques are compounded with many factors that may affect the measurement (Myers, 2010). Patient anxiety and poor blood pressure measurement technique by the health professional can result in a misdiagnosis and improper drug treatment (Myers, 2010).
The mercury sphygmomanometer has been “gold-standard” for measuring blood pressure since it’s invention in 1881 (Ostchega et al, 2011). However, mercury is now considered to be an environmental risk and many hospitals and clinical practices worldwide have banned the use of mercury (Myers, 2010). There are now many mercury free alternatives to the sphygmomanometer such as the aneroid sphygmomanometer, digital monitors like the x or ambulatory blood pressure monitors which can take an individual’s blood pressure over a 24-hour period.
However, there are many important factors affecting blood pressure measurements such as; the natural variability of blood pressure, the white coat affect, the limitations and accuracy of the device being used, the difficulty of measuring blood pressure in some groups such as the elderly

White coat phenomena

It is well known that anxiety can increase blood pressure and when patients are scared or anxious (Beevers et al, 2007). This is often referred to as the white coat effect and can sometimes raise blood pressure by as much as 30mmHg causing a misdiagnosis of hypertension (Beevers et al, 2007). However, upon familiarity with the medical professional

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