Anybody else had trouble with consistently high BP readings on withings connect bp monitor?

I recently swapped out my old omron wrist monitor for a withings connect bp arm cuff.  It seems like my readings may be running consistently high (20 on sys, 10 on dia).  I'm testing this theory at the doctors office tomorrow.  I purchased the new cuff because my old omron wrist monitor seemed to be reading low, although that was around the time I was in cardiogenic shock before the milrinone (so perhaps it wasn't actually off...).  I halfway managed to get an old fashioned reading with a stethoscope and an armband (unfortunately I am not skilled at the juggling act this requires when taking a reading on yourself lol) and the results sounded about the same as the old wrist cuff.  I did an online search and found a large number of compaints online for my new device having the exact problem 20 high on systolic, 10 high on diastolic.

Other than teaching my spouse how to use the stethoscope and cuff any recommendations on an accurate automatic device?  Not happy with how all the various "wireless" ones have preformed over the years.  Consistently accurate readings are important for me right now so any recommendations would be appreciated!  Pissed about Withings marketing on how accurate and clinically tested it was to find out this is a common issue (the device costs a pretty penny).


I would look at the Omron range again

by Gemita - 2021-07-13 07:03:06

Dear ASully,

Disappointing to hear about the Withings Connect.  I attach a link above on what others say as well and they report similar findings, just in case other members are thinking about buying one of their monitors.

I would look at the Omron range of monitors (again).  I attach a link below on the Omron range.

Omron is what is used in many hospitals that I attend in the UK.  The British Heart Foundation always recommends an automatic upper arm monitor rather than a wrist or finger device since the latter do not appear to be as accurate.

I have always taken several readings, at least two and maybe three, several times a day to see what is normal for me when I am required to monitor my blood pressure and heart rate.  I wait at least a minute between each new reading.  I also take my blood pressure with an empty bladder because a full bladder will result in a slightly higher blood pressure and heart rate reading.  What is important is to get to know what is normal for you with whichever monitor is used. Our blood pressure and heart rate is constantly changing as we all know, constantly reflecting how we feel, which is why it is important to take blood pressure over a period of time, say continuously for a week, to get an understanding of what is normal for us.  Also, I wouldn’t switch from monitor to monitor to try to achieve accuracy because they are all going to vary slightly in their results.  Stick with one reliable monitor and get to know what is normal for you.

The stethoscope and cuff is highly recommended if you know how to use it, so the choice is yours ASully. My sister in law (a nurse in Italy) gave one to me but I haven't made good use of it.  I am looking to change my old automatic upper arm BP monitor (Boots) for an Omron connect compatible EVOLV HEM-7600T-E Upper arm BP monitor.  Pricey at £129.99.  Takes accurate readings in any position at home or on the go, tracks progress via smartphone, 3 years warranty, but I won't rush into anything since my old one works well

Thanks Gemita!

by asully - 2021-07-13 11:24:23

I think I will go back to an Omron device.  Thanks for the link, I will likely be purchasing one.  I wish I had better hand coordination to just take it myself manually but between the cuff, it's gauge, and the stethoscope I feel like I'm doing a juggling act.  I'm certainly not expierienced with one, especially using it on myself!  I learned well over a decade ago how to use one in school but never had to use it regularly (I primarily keep it on hand for emergencies).

It really is a shame about the Withings device as they are not cheap (about 100 US dollars).  And it sounds like Withings does little to help with what is obviously a problem with their products!

Omron "automatic" monitor

by ar_vin - 2021-07-13 12:10:51

I have one that I got more than 15 years back that I use often; it seems to be fairly accurate - I did check it against the readings taken at my doctor's ofice at one point.

I'm puzzled about the comment about the stethoscope - with the model I have, you just wrap the cuff on the upper arm and press a button on the meter and sit still. The meter inflates the cuff, then deflates it and displays a reading. No stethoscope needed.



Sphygmo calibration has always been a challenge

by crustyg - 2021-07-13 12:43:07

IIRC there was a paper decades ago where a pair of ambitious young docs went around an entire UK hosp and checked the calibration of the sphygmos - mercury and anaeroid.  Terrible performance and even the mercury ones weren't great (the scale behind the column had slipped), so this isn't a new problem.  It was widely discussed last century in relation to which phase of Korotkov sounds correlated best to intra-arterial measurements.

My local PCP has a set of Omron automatic sphygmos for free loan, and they generally seem to be easy to use, reliable and I have *no* idea how good their calibration is!

But this really matters for you, I understand that.  Turns out that a) correct cuff size, b) correct cuff placement, c) proper support of the arm being measured are all major sources of error which often swamp calibration problems.  Given the modest sums involved, my money would be spent on an Omron - and I'd take it with me to my next appt and do a side-by-side comparison to give everyone confidence that the numbers match.

Another Vote Here for The Omron

by Marybird - 2021-07-13 13:06:47

I've had an Omron monitor with cuff for a number of years, currently have the Intellisence model. I picked this one up at a Walgreens for around $50 or so about a year ago. It's very easy to use, and I've found it consistently gives good readings, comparable to what they get for me in both the cardiologists and primary care docs offices. Both these offices do bp checks the old fashioned way, with the "sphygizmos" and stethoscope, feet flat on fhe floor, arm level with the heart, and so on, so I'd say we're good. 

The only time I've had problems getting a blood pressure, period, with the Omron is during the times when my tachy-arrhythmias were going hog wild, but then I'd just get error messages, and any blood pressure monitor would do the same. 

Don't know if this is true, but I've also read that in general, wrist bp monitors are less accurate than arm monitors. 

I use Omron

by Gotrhythm - 2021-07-13 16:12:54

I've used an Omron "Intellisense" wrist cuff for years (the one that has a light that shows when your wrist in in the right position.) The readings have always been consistent with those at the doctor's office. I have found it is most accurate when I sit, elbow on a table and both feet flat on the floor.

Dont discount the fact that your readings at home could be lower because you are more relaxed there than at a doctor's office. Ask them to take your bp again at the end of the visit. See if the number has changed.

Great advice about posture and support

by crustyg - 2021-07-15 13:41:57

Not only should you be relaxed and the arm with cuff properly supported, but you should try to take your BP measurements at the same time of day, each day.  Usually shortly after rising and during the evening (when assessing for treatable hypertension), but for Asully mid-morning and mid-afternoon might be better.

I have really bad white-coat hypertension, so I won't accept any measurements in clinic as a true marker of my BP.  My docs are (for the most part) saints to put up with me...

You know you're wired when...

Intel inside is your motto.

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