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A comparison of interarm blood pressure differences in people post-stroke versus an age-matched control group

1 May 2000


In scientific literature, there is debate over whether significant interann blood
pressure differences exist in normal populations and specific groups, such as people who have had a stroke. This study investigated interarrn blood pressure differences in people who have had a stroke and an age-matched control group. Blood pressure was measured indirectly using an automated blood pressure monitor, th~ Omron HEM-712C. Two sets of bilateral and simultaneous blood pressure measurements (systolic and diastolic) were taken in 29 subjects post-stroke and 30 control subjects. Using an unpaired t-test, a statistically significant interarrn difference (p < .05) in systolic pressures was found in the
group that had prior strokes, and in the subgroup that had spasticity in the upper
extremity. No significant interarm difference was found within the control group.
However, the interarrn differences found in the stroke group were not significantly greater than the interarm differences in the control group. Recommendations are made to measure blood pressure consistently in the arm with the highest reading, regardless of whether that person has had a stroke or not.


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