Body mass index and blood pressure measurement during pregnancy

Hypertens Pregnancy. 2011;30(4):396-400. doi: 10.3109/10641955.2010.506233. Epub 2010 Aug 20.


Objective: The accurate measurement of blood pressure requires the use of a large cuff in subjects with a high mid-arm circumference (MAC). This prospective study examined the need for a large cuff during pregnancy and its correlation with maternal obesity.

Methods: Maternal body mass index (BMI), fat mass, and MAC were measured.

Results: Of 179 women studied, 15.6% were obese. With a BMI of level 1 obesity, 44% needed a large cuff and with a BMI of level 2 obesity 100% needed a large cuff.

Conclusion: All women booking for antenatal care should have their MAC measured to avoid the overdiagnosis of pregnancy hypertension.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Blood Pressure
  • Blood Pressure Determination / instrumentation*
  • Body Mass Index
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hypertension, Pregnancy-Induced / diagnosis*
  • Hypertension, Pregnancy-Induced / physiopathology
  • Obesity*
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Trimesters
  • Prenatal Diagnosis*
  • Prospective Studies