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We investigated finger beat-to-beat blood pressure responses to a series of successive hand elevations in 14 normal volunteers. By passive elevation of the hand by 40 cm and lowering it again after a minute, calibrated hydrostatic pressure changes were induced in the finger arteries of the subjects. Three successive procedures with a 2-min interval between them were performed. Transitions between positions were completed smoothly over a 10-s period. Non-invasive beat-to-beat mean arterial pressure (MAP) in the finger arteries was measured by applying the servo-oscillometric physiograph (University of Tartu, Estonia). A good agreement between the evoked MAP changes during all the three hand elevations (-31.2, -30.4 and -30.0 mmHg, respectively) and the calculated hydrostatic pressure change (-31.0 mmHg) was obtained. The height difference of approximately 40 cm and rate of 4-5 cm/s can be recommended for the hand elevation test, greater postural changes and higher rates may diminish agreement between the measured blood pressure response and the corresponding hydrostatic pressure change. The applied hydrostatic test may be helpful for assessing the accuracy of beat-to-beat finger blood pressure measurement.

Original publication




Journal article


Med Eng Phys

Publication Date





522 - 527


Adolescent, Adult, Blood Pressure, Female, Fingers, Hand, Humans, Hydrostatic Pressure, Laser-Doppler Flowmetry, Male, Movement, Oscillometry, Pulse, Respiration, Sensitivity and Specificity