The Hammacher Schlemmer Institute's tests reveal the one Wrist Blood Pressure Monitor that can, in its opinion, be called The Best. The Institute forwards its recommendation to Hammacher Schlemmer's buyers so they can procure the product for The Hammacher Schlemmer catalog, web site, and retail store. The Wrist Blood Pressure Monitor that is currently The Best can be found here.
Before undertaking testing, The Hammacher Schlemmer Institute surveyed consumers to learn which attributes are most critical when purchasing a Wrist Blood Pressure Monitor. They responded that accurate readings are by far their most important concern, followed by a monitor's ease of use, comfort, and features. These attribute rankings were applied to the data collected for this test.
Respondents were also asked which features matter most in a Wrist Blood Pressure Monitor. Based on their answers, The Best model must be able to take a user's pulse, detect an irregular heartbeat, be easy to operate, and indicate where their blood pressure lies within the "danger zone."
The Hammacher Schlemmer Institute then researched the marketplace from a reasonably wide range of competing product and obtained Wrist Blood Pressure Monitors that possess these desired attributes and features. Prior to testing, the Institute eliminated from consideration any models that did not have a required attribute or feature or if it had an obvious quality issue. Conversely, if a sample offered a unique benefit that distinguished it from other models, The Institute, at its discretion, may have included it in testing even though it may have been lacking a critical feature or attribute.
Testing involved evaluations by Institute analysts, a consumer panel, and an Advanced Nurse Practitioner. Each monitor was rated for its accuracy, ease of use, comfort, and features.
A consumer panel worked with an Advanced Nurse Practitioner from a cardiology lab to determine how accurately each monitor measured a user's blood pressure. The Advanced Nurse Practitioner first took a baseline blood pressure reading with each of the samples. Each measurement was followed by the nurse taking the panelists readings using a traditional sphygmomanometer. Any discrepancy between the two systolic and diastolic readings was noted, and the wrist monitors that produced the results that are closest to the sphygmomanometer's received the top scores.
For each monitor, analysts determined how easy it was to:
Analysts assigned a score each step, with lower scores indicating a process is very difficult and higher scores indicating it is very simple. After testing, analysts calculate an average ease-of-use score for each monitor.
The consumer panel evaluated the comfort of each wrist monitor by considering:
For each step, they assigned a score with lower scores meaning "very uncomfortable" and higher scores meaning "very comfortable." Analysts then calculated an average comfort score for each model.
Institute analysts inspected each sample to determine whether it has any of the following features, which can make a monitor easier or more effective to use:
Analysts awarded points for each feature that a model had, weighted according to how important that feature is to consumers. After testing, they calculated an average features score for each sample.
The Hammacher Schlemmer Institute recommends that you consider these features when shopping for a Wrist Blood Pressure Monitor to ensure you will be completely satisfied with its performance:
High blood pressure is the leading cause of stroke, but monitoring your levels at home can help prevent the condition by alerting you to rising pressure or an ineffective medication before your next doctor visit. The American Heart Association recommends home monitoring for anyone diagnosed with hypertension, and a wrist monitor is a convenient tool for taking a daily reading. The device consists of a wrist cuff that automatically inflates at the touch of a button, and a gauge that measures your systolic and diastolic pressures. Some monitors confirm when the arm and wrist are properly positioned at heart level-essential for taking an accurate wrist reading-and clearly indicate when pressure levels are dangerously high. Some models can even take a user's pulse and flag an irregular heartbeat. A built-in memory dates and stores your results so you can compare them over time, and some models can save data for more than one user. Large buttons and digital results make a monitor easy to operate, and the wrist design is especially convenient for people with large biceps or those who experience discomfort during traditional upper-arm readings.
As with any product, customers must read and follow the product's user guide, marking and labeling prior to use.
The Hammacher Schlemmer Institute was founded in 1983 as an independent, not-for-profit corporation to provide independent testing and consulting services for Hammacher Schlemmer.
The Hammacher Schlemmer Institute was founded in 1983 as an independent, not-for-profit corporation to provide independent testing and consulting services for Hammacher Schlemmer. Although funded by Hammacher Schlemmer, the Institute functions independently of Hammacher Schlemmer. The Institute consults Hammacher Schlemmer and fulfills its mission statement without regard to product prices, brand names, margins, or other commercial considerations. Decisions on specific products to test, the types of test to perform and how to interpret the results lie exclusively with the Institute's research staff. In addition, the Institute's status as a separate entity from Hammacher Schlemmer prevents access to sensitive information, such as inventory levels or product cost, which might influence testing decisions. The Institute's independence assures products are researched, evaluated, and rated objectively without commercial bias.