The next time you get your blood pressure checked, make sure it’s measured on both arms. Doing so could save your life, a new study has found.
Systolic blood pressure differences between the left and the right arm could be signs of vascular disease and increase your risk of dying, according to new research published online Sunday by The Lancet.
The study is a detailed review of 28 blood pressure studies. It found “significant evidence” that different readings on both arms are associated with increased risk of peripheral vascular disease (PVD), the narrowing of arteries that supply blood to the legs and feet, and cerebrovascular disease, which affects the blood supply to the brain.
More alarming is the finding that inconsistent blood pressure readings between the two arms increase the risk of a cardiovascular death by a whopping 70 per cent. The risk of death from any cause is increased by 60 per cent.
These risks were associated with a difference of 15 points or higher in blood pressure readings from each arm.