What is a 24-hour blood pressure monitor test?
The test measures your blood pressure at different times over a 24-hour period. An inflatable cuff is placed around your arm and connected to a small monitoring device. The cuff inflates and deflates at regular intervals over a 24-hour period to measure and record your blood pressure.
You do not need to stay in hospital, and you can carry on with your normal activities during the test. The test may be uncomfortable but, should be painless.
Why do I need a 24-hour blood pressure monitor test?
It is normal for blood pressure to change during the day due to exercise, anxiety, sleep, or any blood pressure medication you may take. So, taking a single blood pressure measurement in the clinic is not always a very accurate way of checking your blood pressure.
The test gives us more detailed information about your blood pressure—the results will show if you need medication or if your current medication is working well enough.
How is the monitor fitted?
Please wear a loose-fitting top or shirt to your appointment as this makes it easier to fit the monitor.
A Nurse will fit the inflatable cuff on the arm of your choice. If the cuff moves while you are wearing it, the results may not be accurate. It should sit comfortably around your arm so please try to move the cuff as little as possible, repositioning as necessary. The cuff is connected to a small monitor that stores the test results.
What should I do while I am wearing the monitor?
You should continue with your normal daily activities. If you take blood pressure medication, please continue to take your blood pressure tablets as usual, unless you have been told otherwise.
The cuff inflates every half hour during the day and every hour during the night over the 24-hour period (from 11:30pm to 7am).
When you feel the cuff starting to inflate, please straighten your arm and keep it still to allow the measurements to be as accurate as possible. However, if the cuff inflates while you are driving, you do not have to straighten your arm and keep still. Please ignore the monitor and concentrate on your driving.
What should I do after the test?
Please remember to return the monitor to us on time. It is your responsibility to return the monitor to DHC Outpatients at Dorking Hospital the next day.
If you don’t bring the monitor back at the agreed time, we may have to cancel appointments for other patients.
Please do not return your monitor by post.
What happens after I have returned the monitor?
Once you have returned the monitor, we will send the results to the consultant or GP who requested the test.