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Vitals + Readings - Self-Reported

What is the Vitals + Readings feature in My HealtheVet?

Vitals + Readings is a section of the My HealtheVet Personal Health Record (www.myhealth.va.gov). It is found under the Track Health tab, in the Vitals + Readings section. Here registered My HealtheVet users can self-enter their vital signs and certain health measures.

As a registered user, you can self-enter your blood pressure, body weight, track your pain levels and more. For more information about the different account types and what you can view, visit My HealtheVet Account Types.


What is the difference between Vitals + Readings in My HealtheVet and VA Vitals and Readings?

Vitals + Readings is information you self-enter in My HealtheVet. These are readings that you update and maintain in your My HealtheVet account as you strive to manage and improve your health. The information is accessed through the Track Health tab. There are nine ways you can monitor your own health measures in Vitals + Readings. These may include recording your blood sugar, cholesterol, heart rate, pain levels, and much more.

VA Vitals and Readings is information your health care team enters into your VA health record. These are readings taken while you are at a clinic appointment, during a procedure, or when you are a patient in the VA hospital.

Note: To help you identify Information that comes from your official VA health record, it always has VA in front of it. If it begins with DoD it comes from the Department of Defense. All other information is self-entered by you. In the VA Blue Button, information you self-enter will start with the word Self-Reported.


What are the requirements for using the Vitals + Readings feature?

Vitals + Readings you self-enter is a feature in My HealtheVet that is available to anyone with a My HealtheVet account. For more information about the different account types and what you can view, visit My HealtheVet Account Types.

Specific features in My HealtheVet are available to you based on your account type. All users who have a Basic account are able to view their self-entered information. If you are a VA patient, you can upgrade your account to Advanced or Premium*. These account types may allow you to refill your VA prescriptions online and view parts of your VA health record and/or DoD Military Service Information.

Take time to Register Today. Veterans who are enrolled in the VA Healthcare System, may upgrade to a Premium account. To do this you will need to go through authentication. This is a process by which VA verifies your identity before allowing access to your VA health record. To learn more, go to: Upgrading your My HealtheVet account through In-Person or Online Authentication.


What are the benefits of self-entering and tracking my Vitals + Readings in My HealtheVet?

The benefits of self-entering and tracking your Vitals + Readings in My HealtheVet are:

  • You can track your vital signs over time

  • You can view your information at anytime, anywhere you have Internet access

  • You are provided with important information about your health

  • You can share your Self Reported Vitals + Readings with caregivers, as well as your VA and non-VA health care providers


What Vitals + Readings will I be able to self-enter and view?

My HealtheVet has provided nine ways you can self-monitor your Vitals + Readings. Each one shows a graph of your progress. You can enter your blood sugar and cholesterol readings. Record your heart rate and pain levels, and much more.

When you are done entering your information, you can use the VA Blue Button to view, print and download your Self Reported Vitals + Readings including your VA Vitals + Readings. Then share them with your VA and non-VA health care teams. Use My HealtheVet to start tracking your health measures online today!

  • Blood pressure - Normal* blood pressure for adults ages 18 and older is between 90/60 and 120/80

  • Heart rate - The normal range of a resting heart rate for adults ages 18 and older is 60-100 beats per minute. Your age, activity level, and the time of day can change your heart rate.

  • Weight - Normal* weight ranges are determined by your height and whether you are male or female. Body mass index (BMI) helps determine if you are at risk for a weight-related disease.

  • Body temperature - The average body temperature when taken orally (by mouth) is 98.6°F. It can range from 96.4° to 99.1°F. However, "normal"* varies from person to person. Your temperature can also vary throughout the day.

  • Pain level - Under normal conditions, people are free from pain.

  • Blood Sugar - Blood sugar levels are measured in samples taken from your vein (called a blood plasma value) or a finger stick. The results from these 2 kinds of samples may be a little different. The normal* range for a Random Blood Sugar Plasma Test is 70-125 mg/dL.

  • Cholesterol (Lipids Profile) - Blood tests that measure the amount of fatty substances (cholesterol and triglycerides) in the blood. These levels vary with your age and gender. Results may also vary from lab to lab. Your total cholesterol should be under 200.

  • Pulse Oximetry - Measures the amount of oxygen in the blood flowing in your blood vessels. This is your oxygen saturation. Normal* ranges are 95% - 100% when breathing room air.

  • International Normalized Ratio (INR) - This is a method that labs use so that prothrombin times results are understood in the same way. A normal* INR is 1.0 - 1.4. If you are taking blood-thinning medicine, your INR will be slightly longer than normal times, typically 2 to 3.

Note: *Normal varies from person to person. Check with your health care team to find out what is normal for you, given your condition.


What is the normal range for Vital Signs?

Normal varies from person to person. The normal range for vital signs may vary with age, sex, weight, exercise tolerance and condition. It is best to discuss this with your health care provider to find out what is normal for you.


How is my body Temperature recorded?

Your Temperature provides a reading of your core body warmth. It is recorded in degrees of Fahrenheit. The average body temperature runs between 97.8º - 99.1º, the average being 98.6º.

Body temperature is measured using a thermometer. One of the more common ways to measure body temperature is with an oral (by mouth) or ear thermometer.


How is my Blood Pressure recorded?

Blood Pressure is recorded as two readings. The upper reading is the systolic pressure, which is the maximal contraction of the heart. The lower reading is the diastolic or resting pressure. For example: 120/80 mm/Hg
There is no natural 'normal' value for blood pressure, but rather a range of values.


How is my Pulse recorded?

Your Pulse is recorded as heart beats per minute. The pulse rate is usually measured by listening directly to your heartbeat. This is done using a stethoscope or measured at either the wrist or the ankle. Pulse rates can vary with age.


How is my Respiratory Rate recorded?

Your Respiratory Rate is recorded in breaths per minute. It is measured by watching how many breaths you take in a minute. This varies with age, but the normal range for an adult is 12-20 breaths per minute.


How is my Pain level recorded?

Your pain level is what you self-report to your provider. It is recorded on a Pain Scale of zero to ten (0 - 10).

  • 0 = No Pain

  • 1 - 3 = Mild Pain

  • 4 - 6 = Moderate pain

  • 7 - 10 = Severe Pain


How is Weight recorded?

Your health care team will weigh you on a scale to record your weight. A sudden, unexpected change in weight may be a sign of a medical problem.


What can affect my Vitals + Readings?

Many things can affect your vital signs and readings including:

  • Age

  • Race

  • Medical history

  • General health

  • Certain foods

  • Medications you are taking


Where can I learn more about Vitals + Readings?

Visit the Medical Library in My HealtheVet to learn more about Vitals + Readings or about a specific health condition. The Medical Library has in-depth information.


Why might it be important for me to keep track my Vitals + Readings?

Your health care team may want you to partner with them to help them track your Vital Signs and Readings. When you do this, it may help them:

  • Identify changes in your health

  • Evaluate your response to treatment

  • Monitor the course of a disease or condition over time

Talk with your health care team to find what you might do to help improve your health.

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Why does my health care team take my Vital Signs?

Your health care team uses your vital signs and health readings to help:

  • Identify changes in your health

  • Diagnose a disease or condition

  • Plan your treatment for a disease or condition

  • Evaluate your response to treatment

  • Monitor the course of a disease or condition over time


Can I print, save or download my Vitals + Readings that I self-entered?

Yes, you can use the VA Blue Button to view, print, save or download Vitals + Readings that you self-entered. In the VA Blue Button the Vitals + Readings you self-enter will be labeled as Self-Reported. To access your information using the VA Blue Button , simply:

  • Log into your My HealtheVet account. For more information about the different account types and what you can view, visit My HealtheVet Account Types.

  • Select Download My Data (Blue Button icon)

  • On the Download My Data page, Select Continue

  • You can now select the Types of Information you want

    • Choose Select one or more types of information

    • Select Self Reported Vitals + Readings (if you have a My HealtheVet Premium* account, you can also select your VA Vitals and Readings as well)

    • Select Submit

    • Select either Download PDF File for a format that is easy to read and print (PDF file) or Download for a simple text format (.txt file)

    • Select View/Print if you want a printed list

    • Select the Done box to return to the previous screen

*To get a Premium account, you will need to go through authentication. This is a process by which VA verifies your identity. This is done before allowing access to your VA health record.

Note: To help you identify Information that comes from your official VA health record, it always has VA in front of it. If it begins with DoD it comes from the Department of Defense. All other information is either self-entered by you. In the VA Blue Button, information you self-enter will start with the word Self-Reported.


Should I take a printed copy of my VA Blue Button: Self Reported and VA Vitals + Readings to my appointment with my non-VA provider?

Yes, you can use the VA Blue Button to download and/or print a copy of your Self Reported and VA Vitals + Readings. You can take this with you to your non-VA appointments. This will provide additional information for your non-VA providers.


Is information in My HealtheVet protected, secure, and private?

My HealtheVet is a secure website. The VA follows strict security policies and practices to make sure that your personal health information is safe and protected.


Can my VA health care team view my information in My HealtheVet?

No, your VA health care team cannot view any information in your Personal Health Record. Your VA health care team does not have access to information you have entered in My HealtheVet unless you share it.


What should I do if I have any questions about my Vitals + Readings?

If you have questions about your Vitals + Readings that you self-enter:

  • Go to the Learn More section under the About MHV tab. Here you can find general information about features in My HealtheVet. This includes VA Vitals + Readings and links to additional resources.

  • Visit the Medical Library in My HealtheVet to learn more about Vitals + Readings or about a specific health condition. The Medical Library has in-depth information.

  • If you still have questions or would like additional information, you can contact your VA health care team. You can contact them by phone, during an upcoming VA appointment, or by using Secure Messaging. Your VA health care team can answer general questions you have about your Vitals + Readings.


Who do I contact if I have a technical problem with the Vitals + Readings feature?

You can contact My HealtheVet about technical problems you have with the Self Reported Vitals + Readings feature. Simply complete the Contact Us form to send a message to the My HealtheVet Help Desk. The staff will respond to your problem within three (3) business days.

You can get to the Contact Us form by selecting the Contact MHV tab at the top of any My HealtheVet page.