Image: Courtesy Panasonic

Hypertension, commonly known as high blood pressure, affects one in three adults in the U.S. (That’s roughly 70 million people.) More and more patients, either those already diagnosed or those at risk, are opting out of the hospital gown and choosing to monitor their blood pressure from home.

I’m not at risk myself. However, like most other red-blooded humans, I am interested in what my body’s up to, and I welcome the opportunity to check the plumbing occasionally. I figured the recent holiday weekend would be the ideal time to test out a new portable blood pressure monitor from Panasonic — specifically because it coincided with the occurrence of The Civil War, the most nerve-wracking game of my alma mater’s college football season.

At first glance, Panasonic’s gadget doesn’t scream “portable” at all. The box in particular seems excessively bulky. But while I may have struggled to get it the three blocks to my car, once the device is out of the box, it’s lighter than it looks and easy to move around, although not exactly small. It comes with only three parts — the main table-top unit, the wireless display, and a battery charger. You simply place your arm through the hole in the mostly plastic, donut-shaped main unit and rest your elbow on the table,

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