Blood pressure is the force of blood inside an artery. A blood pressure reading measures the force of blood against the walls of an artery.
Blood pressure is measured by temporarily stopping the flow of blood in an artery, using a cuff placed around the upper arm. Air is added to the cuff until blood flow stops. As the air is released, blood begins to flow through the artery again. Blood pressure is measured as the blood begins to flow again.
Current as of: January 27, 2016
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review: E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine & Stephen Fort, MD, MRCP, FRCPC - Interventional Cardiology
To learn more about Healthwise, visit Healthwise.org.
© 1995-2017 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.
Donations to UW Health are managed by the University of Wisconsin Foundation, a publicly supported charitable organization under 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.