Background: Several evidences have supported the benefits of home blood pressure monitoring (HBPM) in improving hypertension awareness and control. However, little was known about the use of HBPM by hypertensive patients in primary care in China.
Materials and methods: A cross-sectional questionnaire survey on HBPM use was conducted on 1915 hypertensive patients in Xinzhuang County Hospital in Shanghai, and the factors related to regular use of HBPM were also determined.
Results: Overall, 1011 of the 1915 participants engaged in using HBPM, among whom 786 individuals used HBPM more than once a month. Of the 1011 HBPM users, 25.42% chose a mercury sphygmomanometer, 33.55% used wrist-cuff electronic devices, and 46.5% selected arm-cuff electronic devices. In addition, 73% of HBPM users reported HBP readings to their general practitioners. Compared with the less frequent users, patients who used HBPM daily were likely to report their blood pressure (BP) values to the doctors depending on notebook or mechanical memory than on their own memories (P<0.001). Moreover, patients with college education were 2.7 times more likely than those with middle school education or less to engage in frequent HBPM use (odds ratio=2.71, 95% confidence interval=2.03-3.61).
Conclusion: This local community survey showed that ∼40% of hypertension patients used HBPM frequently in primary care in China. However, certain patients chose the improper BP monitoring device or questionable reporting methods. Therefore, the use of arm-cuff electric devices with multiple memory storage or a home BP telemonitoring system should be promoted by health education targeted at hypertensive patients.