Pick Carefully – The Best Omron Blood Pressure Monitor
There’s no denying it. We, the Medshop team, love the Omron brand for monitoring blood pressure. It’s their world-renowned reputation, sure, but also the fact that Omron monitors go out into the field and they don’t come back.
They’re so popular that we rarely discount them because there’s hardly a need or opportunity to do so. As one of our most popular brands, Omron products fly off the shelves.
That’s not a complaint, either. It’s reflective of a world where people need to keep track of this important data.
Like it or not, the future for measuring blood pressure seems to be secure. Hypertension continues to adversely many people around the world.
Across the globe, raised blood pressure accounts for some 10.4 million deaths per year, and it is estimated that more than 1.39 billion people were suffering from hypertension in 2010. The fact is, today, that figure is likely to be higher.
Until we can sort out every cause and strike down hypertension for good, the world need brands like Omron. This is your guide to finding the ideal blood pressure monitor for your needs.
What is the best blood pressure monitor to buy?
When it comes to picking the right piece of equipment, so long as consumers have done their research, they find their Omron equipment continues to deliver benchmark results use after use, which begs the question, Yeah, but really… which one is the best?
We’re getting there.
The short answer you already guessed: It depends. In a pinch, anything sporting the Omron brand will do the job, plain and simple.
Making the ideal choice for you, whether you are an individual user planning to self-test or a medical professional who needs a unit you can kick down a set of stairs (please don’t do this) and it still works, there are better models.
To get to the heart of the answer to this question, we'll compare some of Omron's best to help you narrow your search.
But first, what is the accuracy of a blood pressure monitor? What is the accuracy of a BP monitor made by Omron?
Is the Omron BP Monitor Accurate?
It should seem obvious by their success, Omron makes the most accurate blood pressure monitors in the world. However, this is not all that separates Omron from the rest though.
In general, as long as one uses the monitor correctly, blood pressure measuring devices stack up about the same. None of them is absolutely the final word in the body’s fluid pressure levels.
First, there are factors which can throw the result, white coat syndrome (elevated blood pressure due to anxiety from medical coats) for one, but there are controllable factors that can affect the outcome too.
We're not talking about drinking, smoking, and obesity either. Those are controllable in the big picture, but in the immediate case of using a BP monitor, Omron or otherwise, one must also follow a few simple steps.
- Use the right-sized cuff. If it’s too small or too big, your results will be inaccurate.
- Apply the cuff correctly. This means on the skin, not through clothing, and placed in the correct place on the arm.
- Rest. Sit for about five minutes before the test for better accuracy.
- Sit. Lying down is too relaxed, but standing up is not relaxed enough.
- Relax. Speaking of relaxing, there is a balance including your emotional stimulus. Anything that would otherwise make the user emotionally tense, should be avoided. So, don’t talk about stressful matters leading up to the test. Do not consume stimulants before the test, including coffee and certain cold medications. Also, alcohol is going to mess things up. Make sure you’ve emptied your bladder too.
- Quiet, please. Do not talk during the test, and if you can avoid it, during your resting period before the test.
If you spend more time managing these factors, provided your blood pressure testing equipment is well-maintained, the results will be as close to accurate as possible, Omron or not.
All that said, Omron should give you fewer malfunction headaches in the long run. That peace of mind contributes to the idea of staying relaxed. A faulty cuff can only drive more hypertension.
Which is the best blood pressure machine for home use?
No beating around the bush. Let’s get right to the question many readers want answered. Here it is…
Most at-home users opt for the HEM7121. It’s Omron’s basic monitor, easy to use, and provided you do all the things listed above, is accurate enough to tell you what you need to know.
The reality is, if there is anything wonky going on with increased hypertension or its rare counterpart, hypotension, you’ll know it.
No matter what, in a case such as that, you’re going to head to your nearest clinic for more information anyway. Spending more money on a device with more bells and whistles is not going to ensure a better reading, and it’s not going to change your diastolic.
If you live with the reality that you may need medical attention for your blood pressure at any time, what you gain from more complicated systems is only that: complications. In fact, for the at-home user, often the less information the better.
Don’t take that to mean the 7121 is a slouch by any measure, either. It may be simple to use, and accurate as a heartbeat, but it offers some key information in addition to blood pressure.
If you have an irregular ticker, the 7121 will let you know. Also, it stores up to 30 readings so you don’t have to keep track yourself.
All of this is easy to read and understand. If you can make popcorn in your microwave, and if you have no special condition other than blood pressure concerns, you can use the 7121.
HEM7320 vs HEM7322
Both the HEM7320 (ultra-premium) and the HEM7322 (premium), which we’ll call the 20 and 22 in this blog from here on out to keep the text short, offer everything you’ll find in the 7121.
Both provide some upgrades which might be worth your money. In general, you’ll spend another $40-60 for one of these monitors, but you’ll get three times the storage. This is key for users who need to keep track of a longer cycle of measurements.
What these two models offer for users who struggle to sit still — for any variety of reasons, medical or otherwise — is body movement detection.
If you recall, this is one of the factors you’ll want to avoid when taking your pressure. Some users simply cannot sit still. Detecting those movements can help you get a better reading.
For clinics, this may save time, which works out to saving money in the long run.
Both can give you an average of the last three readings so long as it’s been fewer than three minutes. Both will light up with an “ok” when you’ve applied the cuff correctly so it’s harder to mess that up.
The 20 offers the IntelliWrap cuff, which aids in proper placement. It also offers enhanced IntelliSense technology, which is ideal for users with certain arrhythmia or heart disorders where blood pressure fluctuates. The 20 solves for those conditions.
Bottom line: If you don’t suffer arrhythmia or heart disorders where blood pressure fluctuates, go with the HEM7322. For clinics deciding between these two, the HEM7320 will serve more of your patients
HEM7280T vs HEM7600T
Where the last two devices leave off, these two pick up the ball and bolt on modern Bluetooth connectivity.
That advance allows users to connect them to Bluetooth-connected devices, like smartphones and tablets. It also makes it easier to share that data.
The most obvious difference between the two is their respective designs. The HEM7600T (7600T) is an arm-based system, unlike any other blood pressure monitor in the Omron line. The display and cuff are one device, making it very compact, very slick, and removes the tubing that can break down over time.
The 7600T also offers the most sophisticated wrap assistance, Omron’s IntelliWrap cuff. This slick design and that no-nonsense cuff are the features that push this device over the HEM7280T (7280T) for many individual users.
Where the 7280T makes up is when there is more than one user on the device. Sure, the 7600T is sleek, but it only keeps a memory of one user’s data.
The 7280T tracks two people. It also has a morning hypertension indicator for people who suffer regular morning hypertension.
Bottom line: If you suffer from morning hypertension, go with the HEM7280T. If you don’t and want a no-nonsense design, go with the HEM7600T. Both represent the top level in blood pressure management.
Some folks absolutely must be able to take BP measurements in a moment’s notice. There is no other option save round-the-clock nursing care. For some people, the anxiety around wondering about tension levels is enough to drive false positives all day long.
Consult with your doctor about whether or not having a blood pressure monitor in the home is for you. Discuss which is the best one for you, and listen to that advice despite our opinion on the matter.
Ultimately, your doctor can advise you what’s the best solution for you.
For more information on choosing the right medical equipment for your needs, stay tuned to the Medshop New Zealand blog.