Study of Inter-arm systolic blood pressure difference in hypertensive individuals

Thenmozhi R¹, Vimal T²
¹Associate Professor, ²Post-graduate, Department of Physiology, Coimbatore Medical College, Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu, India

  • Background: Arterial blood pressure, a routinely measured vital parameter is a key screening factor for future risks of cerebrovascular accidents, coronary heart diseases, renal failure, and hypertension. As the lifestyle of current generation is sedentary, there is an enormous increase in incidence of non communicable diseases. Apart from being a very simple efficient screening tool, the inter-arm difference in systolic blood pressure has been proven to be associated with future incidence of hypertension, coronary heart disease, stroke etc. This study was designed to focus on the incidence of increased inter-arm difference in systolic blood pressure in hypertensive individuals.
  • Aim: To compare the inter-arm difference in systolic blood pressure (IADSBP) of hypertensive individuals with normal subjects.
  • Materials and Methods: The blood pressure of the hypertensive individuals and normal subjects were measured sequentially in both arms, three times with an interval of 5 minutes between each reading. The difference between the average values of the systolic blood pressures of both arms was taken as IADSBP.
  • Results: The mean IADSBP value in hypertensive group was 11.6373 +/- 4.29221 mmHg as against 3.3007 +/- 2.50303 mmHg in control group. The ‘p’ value was statistically highly significant (<0.001). 43% of the hypertensive group had an IADSBP of 10 – 15 mmHg and 18% had a difference of 15 – 20 mmHg.
  • Conclusion: This proves that measuring blood pressure in both arms will be instrumental in picking up the individuals with high IADSBP value and to monitor closely and prevent cardiovascular and cerebrovascular accidents.

Keywords: blood pressure, cerebrovascular accidents, coronary heart disease, hypertension, inter-arm systolic blood pressure difference (IADSBP), non communicable diseases