Thursday, October 30, 2014
Monday, January 04, 2010 jakeski, Community Member, asks

Q: What if your left arm and right arm have significantly different readings ?

On more than a few occaisions, I have measured significantly different blood pressures in my right arm and then my left arm within the same 5 minutes.  Something like 147/75 on the left and 127/70 on the right.  To check the machine, another person uses the same machine right after me, and gets consistant results right to left.  What does this mean ?


Also, I have not found any sufficiently detailed information source online to answer questions like this.  It all seems to be the same old stuff that really does not get to any science that can explain what the numbers really mean.  Do you know of any credible information source ?

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Answers (2)
Lisa Nelson, Health Pro
1/ 4/10 7:20pm

HI Jakeski,


It is not unusual for your blood pressure to be different in one arm than the other. Blood pressure may be slightly higher in your dominant arm. For example, if you are right-handed, you may get a higher blood pressure reading when taken on your right arm. Usually the difference between arms is 10 mm Hg or less. Now, if you have heart disease, studies show the difference between arms to be greater. The arm with the higher blood pressure, is the one you should monitor.


Here is a post that may help:


What if my blood pressure is different in both arms?


All the best,

Lisa Nelson RD

7 Natural Ways to Lower Blood Pressure

jakeski, Community Member
1/ 5/10 4:09pm



    Thanks for that excellent response !  It gives me information to speak with my Doctor about.

    If you have time for one other question about blood pressure I would be very greatfull.  If your BP starts off in the morning at say 115/73 and then goes to 140/75 by late afternoon, and this is a regular daily repeatable pattern, can you tell me anything about what may be causing this ?

   I take a short acting BP med in the early afternoon to ward off the impending headache. On days I run, the BP tends to be much more stable thruout the day.






Lisa Nelson, Health Pro
1/ 5/10 5:14pm

Hi Jakeski,


Unfortunately, I'm not able to shed light on why your blood pressure is increasing throughout the day.  Maybe someone else will reply with a possibility, but be sure to discuss with your physician.  It's possible your medication dosage or timing needs to be adjusted.


All the best,

Lisa Nelson RD

Heart Healthy Tips

Bill Al, Community Member
5/ 5/10 4:03am

What if the pressure in the right arm is 14 mm Hg lower than that in the left arm. What does that mean? Does this reflect a normal variation?

cathy, Community Member
1/30/14 5:37pm

what ifyour left arm and right arm significantly different reading,that normal or not

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By jakeski, Community Member— Last Modified: 05/25/14, First Published: 01/04/10