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How to choose a tonometer for home use

Time comes and every person suffering from hypertension, due to the need to constantly monitor the pressure, reflects on how to choose a blood pressure monitor for home use. A small device will let you know when to take the medicine, as well as help identify the causes of blood pressure fluctuations. However, in a variety of tonometers it is easy to get confused and to acquire the wrong type or model of the device. That is why it will not hurt in advance to study the main offers of the modern medical equipment market.


Types of home appliances

Types of tonometers

There are three main types of tonometers: mechanical, semi-automatic and automatic

Today, leading sellers of medical equipment have two types of tonometers - mechanical and electronic. The latter are automatic and semi-automatic.

Many years ago, mechanical tonometers have become firmly established in the life of users and have since occupied their niche in the market. They are quite easy to use, because you only need to train in order to inflate and deflate the air, squeezing a special pear from rubber with a brush. Low cost, durability and accuracy of measurement - these are the main advantages of mechanics. However, in order to catch the tones of the upper and lower pressure, it is necessary to have a rather delicate ear.

A set of mechanical devices consists of the following parts:

  • pneumatic blower (pear);
  • shoulder cuff;
  • pressure gauge (sometimes diaphragm or mercury);
  • phonendoscope.

The human factor has a significant effect on blood pressure measurement data using a mechanical device. So there are certain errors in the obtained indicators, which can reach up to 15 mm Hg. If a person is unprofessional, then you should not rely on reliable data.

When planning to use the device yourself, when buying, it is better to look at the tonometer, in which the pressure gauge and the air compressor are combined, and the stethoscope is already built into the device.

Electronic tonometers are more perfect in comparison with their mechanical counterparts: in addition to the amount of pressure, they will measure heart rate and other indicators, depending on the capabilities of a particular device. Phonendoscope in electronic tonometers is not provided. Arrhythmia indicators are present in the device, due to which it is possible to track heart malfunctions. The memory of the electronic device records the data of the last measurement. Due to this aspect, it is possible to monitor the level of blood pressure over time. These data will subsequently help the doctor to conduct high-quality treatment. This type of tonometer is easy to use and accurate measurement results. For the correct operation of the device, the user only needs to scrupulously read the operating instructions.

In order to measure the level of blood pressure using a semi-automatic tonometer, it is necessary to fix the cuff on the shoulder and inflate the air with a second hand and a pear. The device runs on batteries, is equipped with a memory unit and guarantees the accuracy of the readings, which are displayed on an electronic display.

How to wear a blood pressure cuff on the shoulder

It is important to place the tonometer cuff correctly on the shoulder.

An automatic device is a small box with a display on the cuff. It has a compressor for autonomous pumping air and creating pressure in the cuff. The device is based on an oscillometric electronic measuring system. The air inside the cuff comes automatically after pressing a special button, without requiring human intervention. The device independently determines the pressure, produces a pulse count.

Automatic tonometers are designed for two types of mounts:

  • fixation on the shoulder;
  • fixation on the wrist. The device is very compact, but not inferior in accuracy to other automatic blood pressure monitors. The device is designed for more convenient use, in particular, for people with a large shoulder (for example, athletes).

An automatic or semi-automatic tonometer is ideal as a portable or home device. Both types of devices will reliably and accurately measure blood pressure without requiring specialized skills from the user.

Criterias of choice

Pressure measurement rules

During the measurement of pressure, it is important to take the correct position to get the correct result.

Before purchasing a tonometer, make sure that the device has all the necessary documents (passport, warranty), which contains the address and other information about the manufacturer in Russian. A good device has an approximate life of 20 years, and the manufacturer’s warranty is valid from 2 to 5 years.

Accuracy and speed of measurement

The first thing you need to pay attention to when buying a home tonometer: small errors as a result should not exceed 3 mm Hg for pressure and 5 beats per minute for heart rate.

The accuracy of measurements at home is due not only to the quality of the device, but also depends on a number of reasons:

  • stress and motor activity;
  • conversation with someone;
  • mechanical vibrations of the surface on which the hand is in the cuff;
  • frequent consecutive measurements;
  • body position, cuff tension.

Cuff size and material

In order to properly fix the cuff (oversleeve), pay attention to whether there is a special metal clip (bracket) that holds the shape and allows you to position the device in the way you need.

The humeral cuff of an electronic tonometer has three sizes:

  • children - 15–22 cm;
  • standard - 22–32 cm;
  • the maximum is 33–42 cm.

As a rule, automatic devices are equipped with a standard cuff. The cuff for fixing on the wrist is available in lengths from 13 to 20 cm. Also, if necessary, you can order an individual-sized cuff.

The sleeves (cuffs) for mechanical tonometers are of the following length:

  • from 7 to 12 cm;
  • from 11 to 19 cm;
  • from 18 to 26 cm;
  • from 25 to 40 cm;
  • from 34 to 51 cm;
  • from 40 to 66 cm (hip).

They are nylon and cotton. More pleasing to the body sleeves made of cotton. For use in medical institutions it is more expedient to use nylon versions, because of their convenient processing.

Network operation

Automatic shoulder tonometers, as a rule, have a mains power cord included. This allows not to spend money on the purchase of batteries if the device is used at home. Also, do not worry about the fact that the batteries run out at the most inopportune moment.

Portable devices with fixation on the wrist are designed mainly to work from finger batteries. It is convenient to take such devices with you on the road, vacation, while camping, etc.

Availability of additional functions

All automatic and semi-automatic tonometers have data memory blocks, a battery saving function, and an option to control the quality of the device. In addition, there are electronic clocks and a calendar.

But the greatest interest of users is caused by models with built-in specialized capabilities, which can boast of automatic tonometers. Examples of new technologies are additional features:

  • heart arrhythmia indicator (PAD-technology). Violation of the heart rate negatively affects the reliability of the results. A special indicator will alert the user to the problem if it detects an irregular heartbeat during pressure measurement. The diagnostic function will also help prevent potential complications associated with the presence of this pathology. A person will apply for cardiac care in time if the heart arrhythmia icon appears repeatedly;
  • movement indicator. The sensor will work if the person moved during the procedure. The indicator will immediately inform you that the result is incorrect and you need to re-measure the pressure;
  • automatic calculation of the average values ​​of indicators. Physiologically, the pressure of a person fluctuates every minute. For a more objective picture of the state of the cardiovascular system, the developers came up with the option of averaged value of pressure and pulse, based on the readings of the last three measurements;
  • Intelligent measurement technology Intellisense is a set of functions of the tonometer that allows you to make the most accurate measurements based on the individual characteristics of the user. During the procedure, the device evaluates and takes into account a set of parameters: pulse, the presence of arrhythmia, the necessary degree of compression of the artery. This eliminates the need for multiple measurements and guarantees no distortion of the result. The technology is patented and used in devices of leading Japanese manufacturers - the companies Omron and AND;
  • saving data of several users. In other words, the memory of some devices is designed including the fixation of guest data. Different models store the results of recent measurements (from 30 to 100). This allows you to track the pressure in the dynamics, including the date and time of each result. Switch between data from different users easily with just one button;
  • index of morning hypertension. Regular high blood pressure in the morning means that a person has a heart attack - the risk is increased 2 times - or stroke (the risk increases 6 times). Therefore, some tonometers are already equipped with a corresponding indicator. The device "remembers" the morning readings of the pressure of the owner. In the event that it is regularly high just before lunch, a special warning icon will appear on the screen as a pointer to the urgent need to consult a cardiologist;
  • hand position control. The function is present in the carpal tonometers and makes it clear whether the user's hand is properly positioned. For correct measurement results, it should be at chest level. The indicator will work if the sensor determines that the limb is in the wrong position;
  • sound accompaniment. For the visually impaired and the elderly, in some models, a function is provided when the heart (pulse) is heard during a measurement procedure. The tonometer also signals the beginning and end of its work. The function can be started and disabled as required.

Dimensions and weight of the tonometer also matter. Compact devices on the wrist weigh the least, but this indicator also depends on the size and capabilities of the device.

Price policy

The prices for tonometers from well-known medical brands fluctuate in a wide range, ranging from simple models of the economy class to “stuffed” with new-fangled functions of expensive options. Therefore, choosing the device, you need to decide in advance on the necessary set of parameters for you personally. Acquire the device only from well-known manufacturers specializing in the manufacture of medical equipment. Such today are Japanese, German, British and Swiss brands of medical equipment:

  • Omron is a Japanese diversified corporation. Manufacturer of electronic equipment, in particular, medical: blood pressure monitors and nebulizers (inhalers). For many years, the company has been the market leader in medical technology in these segments. He takes an active part in the development of innovative products and technologies. Founded in 1933;
  • AND is a company specializing in the development of mechanical and digital measuring instruments. This Japanese brand has been working in high technology since 1977;
  • Citizen is a Japanese holding, the world's largest manufacturer of watches and other electronic devices. Year of foundation - 1930;
  • Microlife is a Swiss specialized medical corporation. Produces diagnostic equipment since 1981;
  • Meditech is an American healthcare information technology company. Founded in 1969;
  • Nissei is a brand of blood pressure monitors from the Japanese company Nihon Seimitsu Sokki Co., Ltd. The company has been manufacturing high-tech equipment and components since 1950;
  • B.Well is a young British company, founded in 2004. Specializes in the production of medical devices for the whole family. The company's mission is the quality and affordability of the devices for any user;
  • Rudolf Riester is a large German manufacturer of professional medical diagnostic equipment. The company was established in 1948.

When purchasing a tonometer according to the optimal ratio "price - quality", it is worth looking at semi-automatic models with shoulder cuffs. To get a machine at an affordable price is also realistic, if you opt for a device with classic options. The price for models with additional "intellectual" features, naturally, cannot be low.

Pharmacist demonstrates a tonometer

Omron patented Intellisense smart metering technology.

The cost of a mechanical tonometer today starts on average from 700–800 rubles. Semiautomatic can be purchased in the range from 1000 to 2200 rubles. The price of the device depends on how versatile it is. The most expensive devices in the home tonometer segment are automatic machines. Their purchase will take an average of 2,500 to 4,000 rubles. Prices for professional innovative models of devices, presented in a wide sale, reach up to 10 thousand rubles.

Features of blood pressure cuff for the elderly

A blood pressure monitor should be present in every home where an elderly person lives. Hypertension is often associated with chronic age-related diseases accumulated over the years. With a compact tonometer, quite accurate, but any non-professional user will be able to handle. The advantages for its owner in the form of successful treatment and prevention are obvious.

Elderly man measures pressure

Even a man of respectable age can easily cope with an automatic tonometer.

The choice of tonometer for an elderly person should consider the following:

  1. Despite the availability of the price of a mechanical blood pressure monitor and its quality, it is difficult to recommend it to an elderly person for use. The obvious disadvantage: in the treatment of him, it is desirable to have a certain skill or opportunity for the physical participation of another person in the measurement process as an assistant. In addition, the device requires a good hearing, otherwise you can simply not hear the upper and lower blood pressure. The pensioner should prefer the option of a semiautomatic device or an automatic blood pressure cuff with a shoulder cuff, since the blood vessels of the forearm are heard better than on the wrist.
  2. For older people, a tonometer with an indicator for arrhythmias and morning hypertension is especially recommended, as they are at an increased risk zone for heart and vessel problems caused by age-related body wear.
  3. It is appropriate to pay attention to the model with a fairly large screen and distinct large characters, because the vision often fails people in age. If you have problems with hearing, the soundtrack function will help you more conveniently use the device.
  4. People with diagnoses of tachycardia or atherosclerosis are shown to have a tonometer with a function of the average of recent measurements.
  5. It is important to choose the required length of the cuff. It is desirable that the future user has tested the convenience and functionality of the device in the store before buying it. For this, an elderly person should independently put on a blood pressure monitor, measure the pressure and evaluate how practical and comfortable this is for him.

The most exotic type of tonometer measures pressure on a finger. Rather, it resembles a toy than a medical device. For serious diagnostics, it is still unsuitable because of strong errors in measurement.

In general, before buying a blood pressure monitor for your parents or grandparents, it is better to consult with your doctor. He will certainly give some sensible recommendations and the money spent on the purchase will be a reasonable investment in the health of a loved one.

Overview of popular tonometer models (Omron, Microlife, B.Well, Citizen, Riester)

Чтобы выбрать оптимальный тонометр, который будет соответствовать индивидуальным потребностям будущего пользователя, необходимо изучить преимущества разных видов приборов: функциональность, габариты, гарантию и, конечно же, цену.


Механические тонометры предназначены в основном для медицинских учреждений. Однако существуют модели, пригодные и для домашнего пользования. Их манжеты, как правило, выполнены из нейлона или хлопка, дополнены специальной фиксирующей скобой; груша производится из латекса по бесшовной технологии, обеспечивающей прочность механизма для нагнетания воздуха. Диапазон манометра от 20 до 300 миллиметров ртутного столба. Людям с плохим зрением рекомендуется выбирать аппарат с большим диаметром манометра (до 15 см).

Модели, на которые стоит обратить внимание:

  1. B.Well WM-61 — сочетание доступной цены и точности измерения. Производителем заявлено высокое качество улучшенного манометра.
    Механический тонометр B.Well WM-61

    Механический тонометр B.Well WM-61 — качественный и недорогой прибор

  2. Microlife BP AG 1–40. Прибор выгодно отличается большим размером манометра и увеличенной манжетой (40 см). Также модель примечательна тем, что манометр с грушей соединены. Прибор предназначен для профессионального и домашнего использования.

    Mechanical tonometer Microlife BP AG1–40

    Mechanical tonometer Microlife BP AG1–40 suitable for hospital and home use

  3. Ri-San (Riester) 141 - a tonometer from the German manufacturer. Designed for self-measurement, equipped with a special D-shaped ring-lock. The most durable and accurate mechanical device. Ergonomic, suitable for right-handers and left-handers. Practical cuff with integrated ring fastener. Suitable for self-measurement of pressure, even in the presence of heart failure. The only disadvantage of the device is quite a high price.
    Mechanical tonometer Ri-San (Riester) 141

    Mechanical tonometer Ri-San (Riester) 141 - a very thoughtful model, but expensive

Semi automatic

Semi-automatic tonometers are much more convenient to use yourself at home. Measurement of pressure and pulse occurs automatically, the user only pumps up air with a pear. Among people suffering from unstable pressure, the following semi-automatic models are in demand: Cititzen CH-308B, OMRON M1 Classic, Citizen, CITIZEN CH-302B, Omron S1, Microlife BP N1 Basic, Omron M1 Compact, B.Well WA-22H, OMRON M1 Eco.

In comparison with mechanics, automata already possess a number of additional functions, such as the diagnosis of arrhythmia, memory, the average result of recent measurements.

The most successful semi-automatic models:

  1. Microlife BP N1 Basic is one of the high-tech models in the semiautomatic segment. Swiss quality and high accuracy class guarantee maximum accuracy of the results. Among the benefits are also:
    • memory for 30 measurements;
    • diagnostic function of arrhythmia (including in the early stages);
    • accuracy of measurements of the increased class;
    • 5 year warranty from the manufacturer.
      Semi-automatic tonometer Microlife BP N1 Basic

      Semi-automatic tonometer Microlife BP N1 Basic has a large amount of memory despite the very affordable price.

  2. Omron S1 - reliable device for a reasonable price. Its advantages:
    • large characters on the display (even older people can see without glasses);
    • automatic memorization of up to 14 recent measurements;
    • compact electronic unit;
    • universal cuff size and fan-shaped shape;
    • retainer-clamp for the ability to independently put the cuff on the shoulder;
    • the function of calculating the average pressure;
    • five year warranty on the device.
      Semi-automatic tonometer Omron S1

      Semi-automatic tonometer Omron S1 - reliable and inexpensive device

  3. B.Well WA-22H. The tonometer is distinguished by a thoughtful and stylish visual solution. The manufacturer pays attention not only to measurement accuracy, but also to details that create additional convenience in use. Other benefits include:

    • large display and large characters;
    • arrhythmia detection function (even at the initial stage);
    • anti-shock protection of the electronic unit;
    • control button backlight;
    • "Memorizing" the data of the last measurement;
    • universal cuff with a removable cover (for easy sanitization);
    • individual control of the degree of pressure in the cuff (amount of air);
    • ability to work from the network.
      Semi-automatic tonometer B.Well WA-22H

      The cuff tonometer model B.Well WA-22H has a removable cover that is easy to wash

Automatic, including on the wrist

Automatic tonometers on the shoulder or wrist are the ideal choice for home monitoring of pressure changes. Devices of this type fully meet the requirements of all family members. The new generation of electronic automatic tonometers is not inferior to the accuracy of measurements of professional mechanical devices.

In addition, innovative technologies, such as Omron's Intellisense, Microlife PAD technology (individual cuff compression level), arrhythmia indicators, contribute to effective prevention at home.

Medical professionals recommend choosing tonometer automata today.

Some of the most interesting models:

  1. Microlife BP A2 Basic is positioned as a universal device for the whole family at an affordable price in the segment of automatic devices. Main advantages:
    • soft air pumping technology without excessive pressure and pain;
    • definition of arrhythmia (at any stage);
    • memory for the last 30 measurements;
    • the ability to track the dynamics with the function of the average value for the period;
    • the indicator of norms of WHO (for comparison of results of measurement with norm);
    • hand position control;
    • movement indicator.
      Automatic tonometer Microlife BP A2 Basic

      Microlife BP A2 Basic - automatic tonometer, diagnosing arrhythmia, even at the initial stage

  2. Omron M2 Basic with adapter - device with Intellisense technology, provides comfort and accuracy of measurements. Ensures the success of the procedure from the first time, the need for repeated measurements several times in a row is excluded. The main advantages of the tonometer:
    • Intellisense technology;
    • memory for the last 30 results;
    • energy saving (up to 1500 measurements with one set of batteries);
    • one-button operation;
    • three-line display with large characters;
    • mains adapter included.
      Automatic tonometer Omron M2 Basic with adapter

      The automatic tonometer Omron M2 Basic with an adapter runs on patented Intellisense technology

Table: main characteristics of popular models of tonometers

Brand and model of tonometer Memory Cuff Benefits / Additional Features Producing country Warranty Weight, (g) Price, rub.)
B.Well WM-61 (mechanics) not 25–40 cm without a metal ring Needle valve for smooth cuff blowing Great Britain 1 year 385 780
Microlife BP AG 1–40 (mechanics) not 25–40 cm without a metal ring Big size of the manometer combined with a pear Switzerland 2 years 520 1890
Ri-San (Riester) 141 (mechanics) not
  • size to choose from;
  • with metal bracket.
Wear resistant parts:
  • copper beryllium membrane;
  • push-button high-precision drain valve.
Germany 2 years 700 5950
Microlife BP N1 Basic (semi-automatic) 30 measurements Universal 22–32 cm
  • PAD technology;
  • accuracy class: A / A.
Switzerland 5 years 320 1450
Omron S1 (semiautomatic) 14 measurements Universal 22–32 cm Calculate average pressure Japan 5 years 200 1640
B.Well WA-22H (semiautomatic) 1 dimension Universal 22–32 cm (with removable cover)
  • PAD technology;
  • power supply from the network.
Great Britain 3 years 490 1690
Microlife BP A2 Basic (automatic) 30 measurements Cone-shaped cuff (22–42 cm)
  • PAD technology;
  • movement indicator;
  • calculation of the average value.
Switzerland 5 years 560 2990
Omron M2 Basic with adapter (automatic) 30 measurements Standard (22–32 cm) or fan-shaped cuff (22–42 cm)
  • Intellisense smart metering technology;
  • energy saving technology;
  • arrhythmia indicator;
  • work from the network.
Japan 5 years 425 2450

What device to buy for the correct measurement of blood pressure at home

Leading cardiologists believe that the ideal choice of home blood pressure monitor is a semi-automatic or automatic device with a cuff on the shoulder, if the users are over 40 years old. For young people, carpal models of well-known Japanese, Swiss, German and other experienced manufacturers specializing in the development and sale of medical equipment are perfect.

Video: how to choose a tonometer (expert opinion)


Since I suffer from chronic diseases of the heart and blood vessels, I often have to use various kinds of tonometers to measure blood pressure. I really liked the mechanical tonometer. I bought it a long time ago, and he did not let me down for a long time. But now it is broken, and I bought a new Omron automatic blood pressure monitor. Tonometer automatic OMRON M2 Basic. Immediately, I note that he qualitatively measures pressure and, most importantly, that he himself determines the level of cuff inflation and the number of heartbeats (pulse). Previously, he pumped up the cuff to the pain in his hand. The electronic unit and fan-shaped cuff are a guarantee of the quality of the device and the accuracy of the data of its indicators. The automatic tonometer Omron M2 Basic has been working for quite a long time with a little pinky batteries. After failure, they are easy to replace with new ones. You can measure pressure with this device yourself, without the help of unauthorized persons. The warranty period of this device is 5 years.



Good day to all! A year ago, I was confronted with the fact that, on the recommendation of a doctor, I was puzzled by the purchase of a tonometer in order to monitor my pressure over time. I didn’t want to spend too much money, but I also wanted to get a quality product. The choice fell on the model of the company B.WELL WA-22H. The tonometer is a fairly convenient device, one small question arose during the operation of the instrument - I did not understand why such a long cord? He always strives to twist and inconvenient to twist. Measures not only pressure, but also pulse. And also has a detector that detects arrhythmia! Pumps up pressure quickly. The cuff is comfortable, washes and fits any hand diameter. To measure the pressure in particular, nothing is needed, just pump air. This greatly simplifies the process, since for the majority of people, as for me, measuring the pressure with a mechanical tonometer brings a lot of inconvenience and is rather difficult. The only thing is that in order to get the correct result, it is necessary to observe a number of conditions that I think everyone is familiar with: the measurement is made in the sitting position. The hand on which pressure will be measured must be relaxed and stationary at the level of the heart. Well, it takes 15 minutes to rest before measuring the pressure. Do not start measuring immediately after running up the stairs. Well and correctly put on a cuff of course. In general, the device is very necessary in every home. In particular, this model pleased me a lot, all the more so the price is only 1000 rubles (or so). And extra frills need nothing at all. Bought a year ago. For the year of operation, DAILY as new, even the batteries did not change (by the way, they are not included in the kit). The numbers on the screen are large and clear! The design is very comfortable and nice looking! In general - I RECOMMEND! For the price the worthy and reliable device!



Blood pressure is an indicator of cardiovascular health. It is important to be able to control blood pressure yourself at home. Modern medical technology is being developed to meet the increasing consumer needs. Portable blood pressure monitors are now equipped with useful functions that make it possible to successfully carry out prevention, correction and treatment of deviations from the norm. Having the necessary basic information, choose a tonometer of this type and brand so that your individual needs are as much as possible taken into account.


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