Ambulatory blood pressure monitoring is a specific type of BP monitoring where doctors get a 24-hour blood pressure insight of a patient to ensure that the patient has hypertension or not. This test could be performed in a 24- or 48-hour cycle according to the analysis necessity. As the assessment is only performed in a particular case of BP monitoring, the 24-hour blood pressure monitor results interpretation is also quite different than a normal assessment. In the later parts, we will find out more aspects of it.
What are the hypertension symptoms?
In simple terms, hypertension is acute high blood pressure. In a normal person, sometimes blood pressure can be high or low but this increment or decrement is temporary and can become a normal state after some rest. However, hypertension is caused for a longer period and if any person is suffering from hypertension, they should change their unhealthy lifestyle otherwise it can lead them to stroke, different types of cardiovascular disease, and organ failure.
Anyone can sense the symptoms of hypertension. The biggest symptom of hypertension is staying relatively high blood pressure all the time. Additionally, there are some other characteristics that indicate a hypertensive patient. For instance, the patient can experience unclear and blurry vision, may experience lightheadedness and which causes fainting, feeling headaches all the time, and fatigue could be another reason. Also, if the nose is bleeding without any reason, patients encounter heart palpitations, breath shortness, and nausea the first thing they need to do is to visit a doctor and measure their BP without wasting any time.
As prescribing medications to hypertensive patients is very sensitive, doctors need full insights into a patient’s BP status throughout the 24-hours cycle. That is why doctors need to perform a particular BP assessment in 24- or 48-hour cycles and analysis the result by comparing it with different indexes, times, and different body states. This assessment is completely different from any kind of blood pressure monitoring. Ambulatory blood pressure monitoring can be performed in the hospital or in a home but there are a lot of enormous differences between home and ambulatory blood pressure monitoring.
HBPM Vs ABPM:
The primary dissimilarity between home blood pressure monitoring and ambulatory blood pressure monitoring is that HBPM can be performed usually in a seated and relaxed body state of a patient. This assessment is a normal assessment where the patient observes their daily blood pressure measurement over a period of time while ambulatory blood pressure monitoring is completely opposite. In ambulatory blood pressure assessment, patients need to do it according to the doctor’s advice and it will measure the blood pressure continuously within a specified time interval and this will be continued entirely in the 24-hour cycle whether you are awake or sleeping.
How does ambulatory BP monitoring work?
As discussed, ambulatory blood pressure works throughout the 24-hours cycle. These types of monitors are designed in such a way that they can be used during your daily work routine. Usually, before starting the assessment doctor performs a manual BP normal BP check-up and records it. After that, they program the device and make a profile of the patient in the analysis software. Now the device is completely ready for its 24-hour assessment journey. The doctor helps the patient to wear the cuff and the patient can return to their home and continue both the measurement process and their daily work simultaneously. After finishing the 24-hour cycle the patient will return to the doctor’s office and then the doctor will collect the from the device and analyze it. Moreover, there are some confusion among the patients about whether they can wear the device during shower and sleeping. To clarify, patients need to wear the device during the whole time of cycle even in the shower and sleep.
To check the whole ABPM process you can watch the video for reference.
What are the benefits of ambulatory blood pressure monitoring?
As there is no cure for hypertension. So, ABPM or ambulatory blood pressure monitoring is quite beneficial for hypertensive patients. With this assessment, doctors can get a full picture of a patient suffering from hypertension. For example, doctors can observe the BP fluctuation in different body postures and at different times of the day. They can analyze the BP difference with different indexes and between awake and sleeping time. It helps to define their diet and medications according to their health condition. Changes in diet and medication can have quite an impact on the hypertension patient and they only can keep their blood pressure in control with a good diet, medication, and a healthy lifestyle.
How do you interpret ambulatory BP monitoring?
For a normal person, ambulatory blood pressure monitoring interpretation is not easy. on the contrary, not knowing the medical terms and the overall analysis system make it quite complex and hard. Normally, doctors and specialists in cardiovascular research can easily interpret the analysis and it also may take time for them to analyze it effectively.
Though, without going into the complexity of the analysis we are going to discuss some simple terms to understand a little bit better about the HINGMED ABPM software system a. On the left side, doctors can program the device by connecting the device to the computer and filling out the details of the patient and the time interval of the measurement. On the right side of the photo, shown is an actual analysis system and a tendency chart showing the systolic and diastolic differences in different circumstances. In the chart blue area shows the white coat hypertension effect and the green area shows the morning BP surge duration. The darker side indicates the night and the lighter side indicates the daytime of the 24-hour cycle.
With the software analysis system, doctors can easily print the result of the assessment according to their needs. The BP report will show all the indexes and variables to help in further assessment.
As ambulatory blood pressure monitoring interpretation is quite complex and not easy for a normal person. Also, a normal patient doesn’t need detailed knowledge of the analysis it is better to ask the doctor if anyone is interested to know any detailed aspect of the analysis system.