OBJECTIVES:

To present oscillometric blood pressure (BP) references from German nonoverweight children and compare them with US references.

METHODS:

From children and adolescents, aged 3 to 17 years, from the German Health Interview and Examination Survey for Children and Adolescents (KiGGS 2003–2006), we obtained standardized BP measurements by using an oscillometric device validated in children. Gender-specific systolic (SBP) and diastolic (DBP) BP percentiles, which simultaneously accounted for age and height by use of advanced statistical methods, were derived from nonoverweight children to avoid overweight prevalence in the reference population influencing BP references.

RESULTS:

The age- and gender-specific 95th percentiles from nonoverweight children (n = 12 199) were lower by up to 3 mm Hg for SBP and up to 2 mm Hg for DBP compared with the total sample (N = 14 349). KiGGS percentiles from nonoverweight children accounting simultaneously for age and height were mostly lower than in the US reference sample but higher for SBP in boys aged 14 years or older. At median height, the age-specific differences in 95th percentiles of SBP ranged from −4 to 4 mm Hg in boys and −2 to 1 mm Hg in girls and, for DBP, from −6 to 2 mm Hg in boys and −5 to 2 mm Hg in girls.

CONCLUSIONS:

Compared with current US references, the proposed German BP reference values are not influenced by the prevalence of overweight children in the reference population, they are based on a validated oscillometric device, and they take advantage of improved statistical methods.

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