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24-hour ambulatory BP monitor

This test measures your heart rate and blood pressure at regular intervals over 24 hours.

Your doctor has recommended you undergo a test called a 24-hour ambulatory BP monitor.

You might not have heard of this medical term before now and may be feeling unsure about the nature of the test.

This information sheet will outline what the test is and what preparations and risks are involved, if any.

After you read this information sheet, you might still have questions. If you do, please contact the team at Heart HQ. We’re here to help.

What’s a 24 hour ambulatory BP monitor?

This test measures your heart rate and blood pressure at regular intervals over 24 hours.

The test involves a blood pressure cuff on your arm, connected to a small device that records the measurements. Everything will be hidden neatly under your clothing.

How does the monitor work?

The blood pressure cuff is loose fitting when deflated. Every 30 minutes during the day, and every 45 minutes at night, the blood pressure cuff will automatically inflate and tighten around your arm. This is when your blood pressure will be measured and recorded.

What are the test results used for?

The device will be used to determine the blood pressure load that your heart, organs and vessels are under during a 24-hour period. The monitor can help to determine whether your blood pressure needs to be managed. And if you’re already on blood pressure treatment, the test can help assess how effective it is.

Ambulatory blood pressure monitors are also useful in diagnosing ‘white coat’ hypertension—a condition where blood pressure only appears to be elevated when measured in a clinical setting.

What can I do while wearing the monitor?

While you are undergoing the test and wearing the monitor, you should go about your normal day, including exercise. Just make sure the device isn’t removed and stays dry.

How do I need to prepare?

We suggest that you shower just before you get the monitor connected and wear a two-piece outfit during the 24-hour period of the test.

24-hour ambulatory BP monitor info sheet