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May 6, 1974

"Pipe-Stem" Brachial Arteries: A Cause of Pseudohypertension

Author Affiliations

From the Medical Service, Veterans Administration Center, Dayton, and the Ohio State University College of Medicine, Columbus.

JAMA. 1974;228(6):733. doi:10.1001/jama.1974.03230310043027

FALSE blood pressure recordings result from many causes, including the auscultatory gap, arrhythmias, partial obstruction of the brachial artery, pulsus paradoxus, shock, obesity, and errors in technique.1

Another cause of false blood pressure readings is Mönckeberg arteriosclerosis of the brachial arteries severe enough to prevent compression by the blood pressure cuff. However, we had never observed this previously. Our search of the literature yielded no references for this entity. Therefore, we report the following case.

Report of a Case  An 82-year-old, alert white man was admitted to the Veterans Administration Hospital, Dayton, Ohio, on May 3, 1973, complaining chiefly of abdominal pain and diarrhea of seven days' duration, and of shortness of breath for 15 to 20 years.The patient had previously been told that he had high blood pressure. He denied having chest pain, paroxysmal nocturnal dyspnea, or peripheral edema. A hospital summary from an admission in 1968