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antiplatelet therapy, compartment syndrome, eptifibatide, noninvasive blood pressure



  1. Hagerbaumer, Sharon BSN, RN, PCCN
  2. Ware, Jami ADN, RN, PCCN
  3. Hayden, Gayle ADN, RN
  4. Potter Smith, Mary Anne BSN, RN, PCCN-CMC
  5. Duggan, Candace ADN, RN
  6. Rockey, Wendy BSN, RN
  7. McCabe, Becky ADN, RN
  8. Lanier, Lori ADN, RN


Background and Research Objective: Clinicians often avoid the use of automated blood pressure (BP) devices following coronary interventional procedures in the belief that bleeding into the tissue at the cuff site occurs more often with an automated BP device. Research on the incidence of ecchymosis at the BP cuff site with automated and manual BP measurement devices is limited and involved patients on thrombolytic therapy. The purpose of this study was to determine if the type of BP measurement device (automated or manual) affects the incidence of ecchymosis in patients on eptifibatide therapy after coronary interventional procedures.


Subjects and Methods: Using a randomized, controlled trial design, BP was measured for 24 hours in consenting post-coronary intervention subjects with a manual BP and automated BP device. Each subject served as his/her own control, with manual and automated BP devices used for BP measurement on opposite arms of each subject. The incidence of complications associated with BP measurement (ecchymosis, hematoma formation, compartment syndrome) was evaluated periodically during the 24-hour study period. Data were analyzed with Student t test and [chi]2 analysis, with P < .05 considered significant.


Results and Conclusions: In 44 post-coronary interventional procedure patients on eptifibatide therapy, ecchymosis occurred in 9% of arms with automated BP measurement and 14% of arms with manual BP measurement during the 24-hour study period. This difference was not statistically significant. No other complications were observed. This study found that the overall incidence of complications from BP measurement was low and not related to whether the device used was an automated or manual BP device in post-coronary interventional procedure patients on eptifibatide therapy. Based on this study and a prior one, the reluctance of clinicians to use automated BP devices in post-procedural coronary intervention patients because of fears of increased tissue bleeding does not appear scientifically justified.