Do number of visits and measurements affect BP readings?

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Takeaway

  • Hypertension prevalence at third visit was lower than high BP prevalence (HBP) at first and second visit.
  • Confirmation of BP recordings with more visits or measurements can reduce HBP.

Why this matters

  • In adolescents reported HBP ranges from 0.46% to 12%, probably a result of different methods employed for identification.
  • Results reinforce previous observation of reduced HBP with increasing number of visits/measurements, probably because of reduced anxiety.

Study design

  • This cross-sectional study evaluated 481 adolescents aged 14-19 y between June and November 2014.
  • BP measured at first visit and repeated in case of HBP.
  • BP calculations categorized as: BP at first visit (measurement 1), mean of first and second visit (measurement 2), mean of first, second and third visit (measurement 3) and mean of second and third visit (measurement 4).
  • Funding: None disclosed.

Key results

  • Overall HBP at first and second visit was 6.4% and 1.9% respectively, and hypertension prevalence at third visit was 1.7%.
  • In boys and girls, HBP was lowest using measurement 4 (8.6% and 4.6%) vs measurement 1 (18.6% and 9.2%), 2 (15.4% and 7.3%) and 3 (13.1% and 5.4%).
  • For boys and girls, systolic BP (120.6 and 111.3 mmHg) and diastolic BP (68.4 and 66.0 mmHg) were lowest at measurement 4 (overall P<.05).

Limitations

  • Small study population.