What can you tell me about Resperate? Does it really help lower blood pressure?

Answer From Sheldon G. Sheps, M.D.

Resperate is a small electronic device that's designed to help slow and deepen breathing. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the device for reducing stress and lowering blood pressure. It's available without a prescription.

Resperate uses a sensor to measure breathing. It sends the information to a small device worn on a strap around the upper belly. The device creates two tones that you hear through earbuds. You breathe in to one tone and breath out to the other.

As you listen to the tones, your breathing starts to match the rhythm. Little by little, the tones make breathing out, called the exhale, longer than breathing in, called the inhale.

Resperate is intended to be used at least 15 minutes a day, 3 to 4 days a week. Within a few weeks, the device-guided slow breathing, called DGSB, exercises may help lower both the top, called systolic, and bottom, called diastolic, numbers in a blood pressure reading.

Research involving the device has shown that slow breathing, which means fewer than 10 breaths a minute, can cause a small but serious decrease in blood pressure in some people. It's unclear how long the effects last or if continued use lowers blood pressure even more. Research also has shown that slow breathing without a device can help lower blood pressure.

Slow breathing is easy to do. There are few, if any, side effects. DGSB may be a first option for people at low cardiac risk who want to lower their blood pressure without medicines.

If you have high blood pressure, you need regular checkups with a healthcare professional. Ask your healthcare professional if slow breathing exercises, including device-guided slow breathing, can help your blood pressure.


Francisco Lopez-Jimenez, M.D.

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Feb. 10, 2024 See more Expert Answers

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