Consumer Reports: Top blood pressure monitors

Consumer Reports: Top blood pressure monitors

There’s a good chance that you or someone you care about has high blood pressure. One in three American adults does –– facing an increased risk of heart attack, stroke, and premature death. Consumer Reports says that beating the odds may be as simple as measuring your blood pressure at home –– with the right monitor.

Consumer Reports’ latest tests of 24 blood pressure monitors compared readings with those taken by a standard device used in a doctor’s office. Included in the tests were four wireless monitors. Going wireless means that you can send your test results straight to your phone or tablet. The ones Consumer Reports tested, though, aren’t so accurate.

Most wrist monitors also fall short when it comes to accuracy. For a true read, you want to have the cuff at chest level. That’s difficult with a wrist monitor. The most precise blood pressure monitors that Consumer Reports tested wrap around the upper arm.

Top rated and a Consumer Reports Best Buy is the Deluxe Automatic from RiteAid for $60. It’s very accurate and comes with a handy carrying case.

Another Best Buy, for $40, is the ReliOn BP 200 from Walmart. The display is slightly smaller, but the device provides excellent accuracy.

Both come with cuffs that fit most arms. But Consumer Reports recommends that before you buy, make sure the cuff fits properly.

Every monitor has different requirements, so Consumer Reports says it’s important to ready the instructions carefully to ensure that you’re using it properly.