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How to Monitor Your Blood Pressure


Updated June 01, 2010

Written or reviewed by a board-certified physician. See About.com's Medical Review Board.

Women with PCOS often have issues with their blood pressure. They should be monitoring their blood pressure relatively frequently, as determined by their physician.

If your doctor determines that you should be checking your blood pressure at home, it is a very easy procedure. Make sure to get some guidance about how to handle your results. Is there a particular reading when you should go to the ER? Call your physician? Monitor more frequently? It can be helpful to write that information down and post it somewhere you will see it.

Difficulty: Easy
Time Required: 5 minutes

Here's How:

  1. Roll up your sleeve and turn the blood pressure cuff on.
  2. Read the instructions to the machine, but generally you will need to wrap the cuff around your upper arm, approximately one to two inches above your elbow, with the heart or arrow pointing into the crook of the inner elbow.
  3. Turn the machine on and let it cycle.
  4. Record the reading.


  1. Make sure the cuff fits you correctly. If the fit is incorrect, it will alter the validity of the reading. Check with your pharmacist, doctor or nurse to make sure that the cuff is the correct size.
  2. Try to take your blood pressure at a time when you are calm and relaxed, and you are not in a rush. Stress and anxiety can raise your blood pressure.
  3. Make sure to keep an eye on the readings you get each time. Don’t hesitate to call the doctor according to his instructions or if you are uncomfortable with a reading.
  4. If you have very high blood pressure, accompanied by a severe headache, dizziness or loss of vision, proceed immediately to the nearest emergency room.
  5. Normal blood pressure reading is below 120/80.

What You Need

  • A notebook and pen
  • Home blood pressure monitoring cuff
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