24-hour Blood Pressure Monitoring Service

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It is estimated that 1 in 3 people in Ireland suffers from hypertension, so this is a common problem. It is important to note that high blood pressure can only be diagnosed by measuring it, since most people have no symptoms at all, even when their blood pressure is very high. If it goes untreated, it may lead to conditions like heart disease or a stroke.

Ambulatory Blood Pressure Monitoring (ABPM) gives a recording of your blood pressure over a 24-hour period, while you move around, living your normal daily life. It uses a small digital blood pressure machine that is attached to a belt around your body, and which is connected to a cuff around your upper arm. It is small enough that you can go about your normal daily life and even sleep with it on.

Some people who have a high blood pressure reading at the doctor’s surgery or pharmacy have a normal reading at home. Monitoring your blood pressure for 24 hours can help work out if it is consistently high.

That is where we can help, visit your local CarePlus Pharmacy* and have your blood pressure checked.

*Selected CarePlus Pharmacies only.

Blood Pressure Facts + Figures

It is essential to know your blood pressure numbers. Below we explain the different levels and what they mean to your health. You particularly need to monitor your blood pressure if you are in the high-risk group.

Hypertension High Risk Group:

You may be at risk if:

  • You are over the age of 40
  • You are overweight (a BMI of 25 or higher)
  • You have a family history of high blood pressure
  • You have a diet high in salt and/or low in fresh fruit and vegetables
  • You have a high alcohol intake
  • You are a smoker
  • You do not take 30 minutes of physical activity daily

How the Service Works?

Book appointment Online or Instore

  • Book your appointment online  or instore with your local CarePlus Pharmacy*. If booking online you will be asked to answer some routine health questions beforehand.

On the day of appointment

  • Setting up a 24hr-BP monitor will take about 15 minutes. The blood pressure cuff will automatically inflate and deflate, the same as when you get your blood pressure checked at your local GP surgery or pharmacy.
  • A blood pressure cuff is placed on your upper arm. The cuff stays on your upper arm for a full 24 hours. It is linked to a recording monitor, small enough to be worn on a belt on your waist.
  • Once the cuff and monitor are comfortably positioned, you will leave the pharmacy and go about your daily activities as normal. The monitor will measure and record your blood pressure and heart rate at regular intervals.
  • You will be asked record your daily activities, symptoms experienced and times you take any medication, in a logbook which we will provide for you.
  • You will also note any changes to your routine activity when the cuff is inflating and the time it happened, for example maybe you were walking up the stairs or running for a bus while it inflated. Your doctor will use this to link changes in activity and exertion to changes in your blood pressure, if there are any.


  • You will return to your local CarePlus Pharmacy 24 hours later to have your monitor removed. Your pharmacist will explain the results and refer you to your doctor, as necessary.
  • They will also answer any questions or concerns you may have and give you lifestyle tips and advice to help lower your blood pressure, or keep it at a healthy level

Why might I need a 24-hour monitor?

By measuring your blood pressure at regular intervals over 24 hours, your doctor can get clear pictures of how your blood pressure changes throughout the day and night, including the normal nocturnal dip. There are several reasons why you may be suitable:

  • To find out if your high blood pressure readings in the clinic are much higher than they are away from the clinic (called the 'white coat effect')
  • To see how well your medicines are working, to make sure they are controlling your blood pressure through the day.
  • To see if your blood pressure stays high at night. If this is the case, they may need to change or adjust your medicines.

What do I need to do during 24-hour blood pressure monitoring?

To allow the machine to work properly, it is important to make sure that the tube to the machine is not twisted or bent. Also, just before the machine is about to take a reading, it will beep. When this happens, you should:

  • Sit down, if possible
  • Keep the cuff at the same level as your heart.
  • Keep your arm steady

For more information on Blood Pressure see our FAQs or alternatively the following websites for helpful information on high blood pressure, symptoms, causes, diagnosis, treatment, complications, and prevention.

HSE website blood pressure page..

Irish Heart Website  or call their helpline on 1800 25 25 50

When your heart beats, it pumps blood that contains oxygen around your body so that your cells can function. As the blood is pumped through your arteries, it pushes against the vessel walls, which are muscular and flexible. The degree to which your blood pushes against the artery walls is known as your blood pressure. The more forcefully the blood is pumped, the more the artery walls are stretched and the higher your blood pressure will be.

Blood pressure is written as two numbers that are recorded in millimetres of mercury (mmHg), for example, 120/80 mmHg. The first number measures the maximum (systolic) pressure of your arteries now when your heart beats, while the second number measures the lowest (diastolic) pressure of your arteries between heartbeats when your heart is resting.

Your blood pressure is measured using a device called a sphygmomanometer. This device contains an inflatable cuff, a rubber bulb, and a measuring dial. First, your doctor or nurse will secure the cuff to your upper arm and place a stethoscope on the arteries inside your elbow. Next, he or she will pump the bulb attached to the cuff so that it inflates and constricts around your arm. At this point, the cuff will be released, and as your doctor hears the sound of blood flowing back down your arm through the stethoscope, they will take a reading of your systolic pressure from the measuring dial. Once this rushing sound has subsided, your doctor will record your diastolic pressure from the dial.

The diastolic number is higher than normal, this means that you have high blood pressure. Having high blood pressure means that your heart must work harder to pump blood, and your arteries are stretched more than normal, which can result in things like a heart attack or stroke. High blood pressure usually does not come with any associated symptoms, and so the only way to see if it’s too high is to measure it. Low blood pressure is not considered dangerous unless you start to experience symptoms such as dizziness, fainting, dehydration, a loss of concentration, blurred vision, or rapid breathing.

Besides using a cuff as described above, there are several other ways to measure your blood pressure:
Ambulatory 24-hour blood pressure monitoring: this takes measurements of your blood pressure for 24 hours as you go about your normal daily activities. You’ll wear a device that will record your blood pressure at regular intervals over 24 hours, which allows your doctor to get a good overall picture of your blood pressure and how it varies over time.
Digital sphygmomanometers: these are electronic measuring devices that take an electronic reading of your blood pressure instead of using a manual pump system.
Portable blood pressure monitors: these are small devices that are powered by batteries. The strap fits around your wrist, and you press a button to get a digital reading on a small screen attached to the strap.

Ambulatory blood pressure monitoring (ABPM) is a process in which you are fitted with a blood pressure cuff and a portable monitor to allow for a full 24 hours of blood pressure measurements.

ABPM allows you to measure your blood pressure over a 24-hour period as you go about your daily activities, like working, exercising, eating, and sleeping. This gives our doctors the clearest and thorough picture of your blood pressure. ABPM also helps to prevent so-called “white coat syndrome” – that’s an elevated measurement some people get when their blood pressure is recorded in their physician’s office. It is the best method to avoid going on medication long term.

There are a number of reasons why your doctor might recommend ABPM:

  • Suspected masked or hidden hypertension: ABPM provides a more accurate reading of your blood pressure across 24 hours, instead of a single snapshot at a particular point in the day.
  • Suspected of having night-time hypertension: compared with during the day, a drop in blood pressure at night is common with sleep apnoea.
  • Blood pressure does not lower despite taking medication prescribed to help lower it.
  • Suspected low BP: dizziness or weakness can be a symptom of low blood pressure.