How to: Measure Blood Pressure

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An introductory video explaining how to manually measure blood pressure. In this video, we are sharing with you the auscultatory method of determining systolic and diastolic arterial pressures. The cuff is placed above the antecubital artery and the cuff is above the upper arm. The stethoscope is placed near the antecubital artery and no sound will be hear when there is enough pressure to close off the artery. When the pressure is slowly released, the sound of blood jetting through the vessel by the vibrations of the wall is called the Korotkoff sounds. The first sound is also the systolic pressure. The diastolic pressure is when a muffled quality occurs. Please note that the sound is often overestimated because sound can still be heard even after deflation of the cuff. This method is not 100% accurate but will give values within the 10% range.

This information was written in the Textbook of Medical Physiology by Guyton and Hall.

**Disclaimer: we are not medical professionals.

How to: Measure Blood Pressure

An introductory video explaining how to manually measure blood pressure. In this video, we are sharing with you the auscultatory method of determining systolic and diastolic arterial pressures. The cuff is placed above the antecubital artery and the cuff is above the upper arm. The stethoscope is placed near the antecubital artery and no sound will be hear when there is enough pressure to close off the artery. When the pressure is slowly released, the sound of blood jetting through the vessel by the vibrations of the wall is called the Korotkoff sounds. The first sound is also the systolic pressure. The diastolic pressure is when a muffled quality occurs. Please note that the sound is often overestimated because sound can still be heard even after deflation of the cuff. This method is not 100% accurate but will give values within the 10% range.

This information was written in the Textbook of Medical Physiology by Guyton and Hall.

**Disclaimer: we are not medical professionals.

How To: Measure Blood Pressure
How To: Measure Blood Pressure
How To: Measure Blood Pressure
How To: Measure Blood Pressure
How To: Measure Blood Pressure

How To: Measure Blood Pressure

How To: Measure Blood Pressure

41 thoughts on “How to: Measure Blood Pressure

  1. Wow, there’s an amazing amount of critical comments on here!

    Just wanted to thank you for mentioning about turning the stethoscope “on”
    and “off”. I found that out the hard way when I was taking my Nursing
    program. And when I was asking other Nursing students about it, I found
    out that ALL the Nursing students I asked, were “faking” their readings.
    They didn’t know how to take a B.P. – I should have clued in when all the
    Nursing students kept saying my B.P. was 120 / 80. I thought it was
    because I was walking everywhere.

    Keep up the good work!

    :)

    1. If you are too ignorant to know the difference between two four letter
      words, I don’t want you taking my blood pressure.

    2. +the unstoppable (VIDEOGAME21) Actually the sphygmomanometer is the dial
      which shows the pressure in mmHg. Just one part of the entire blood
      pressure cusp. lol

    1. +Loreal Gordon no it doesnt coincide with sounds that we interprete. just
      take 1st sound as systolic and last sound as diastolic.

  2. *cough* blood pressure should be done on the left arm for the most accurate
    read *cough* -from a family pediatrician

    1. +MilkaC Lol, yeah I know. I had to think for a second, but it eventually
      came to me. I like to use that comeback for special occasions. Its quite
      funny and it really gets the other person mad. LOL

  3. This is a well made video, but there is an error in your procedure. You
    release the pressure at too fast a rate, and so there is an inaccuracy in
    your readings. The error is because you can hear the heart only when it
    beats, not when it’s idle. Here’s an example. Let’s say the subject’s heart
    beat rate is 60 per minute, or one a second. With the falling needle
    measuring mm pressure, the needle will fall past so many mm in a second’s
    time. It looks to me that your needle moved at least 10 mm in one second
    around the systolic value. If the heart beats by chance just at the time
    the needle passes the true systolic value, you get an accurate measurement,
    but the heart is not likely to cooperate so well. Thus, your reading could
    be off by as much as 10 mm. For a subject with a slower heart beat rate,
    the error could be larger, and for a subject with a faster heart beat rate,
    the error could be lower.

    1. +Michael Matta Yeah when he said 200 i was like whaaat. We we’re taught to
      got 30 above their normal systolic if it’s known, or to palpate the radial
      pulse and pump the cuff up slowly until the radial pulse is occluded. And
      then go about 30 above that number.

    2. I believe they would first pump it up to 160 and then listen for a pulse.
      If there is a pulse, then they would pump to 200 indicating probable high
      blood pressure.

    1. Practicality-wise, some overlap with the cuff is not wrong IMO. Think of a
      balloon with tapered edges. All the pressure inside the balloon is closer
      towards the center, not the edges. Besides, aren’t you trying to get the
      stethoscope where you’d be able to hear the pulse better, which means on
      the distal end of the brachial artery? The more distal you go, the harder
      it is to hear. I used to put the stethoscope distal to the elbow joint, and
      had a hard time hearing the pulse. Putting it more proximally solved the
      problem.

    1. When you release it, you measure the first beat and listen for the last
      beat, the first would be the top number and the last would be the bottom
      number

  4. you are too cute, as a majority people said I was told between 170-180. The
    fact of the matter is I watched a lots of videos some pumped up to 260, or
    most do pumped it up to 200. the point I am trying to make is I guess the
    only down side of pumping it over 180 u only make the patient feel
    uncomfortable that doesn’t mean you get wrong reading…

  5. 200 to high i was taught as a cna in the USA 30 after hearing the systolic
    so if she was systolic 120 i would go up to pumping it at 150.

  6. thank you so much for this tutorial I really don’t have experience using
    the manual blood pressure cuff but I think this helped

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