Arterial transfer functions have been promoted for the derivation of central aortic waveform characteristics not usually accessible noninvasively, but possibly of prognostic significance. The utility of generalized rather than gender-specific transfer functions has not been assessed. Invasive central aortic and noninvasive radial (Millar Mikro-tip tonometer) blood pressure waveforms were recorded simultaneously in 78 subjects (61 male and 17 female). Average transfer functions were obtained for the whole group and for each gender by two methods. Reverse transformation was performed with the use of each transfer function. Measured aortic waveform parameters were compared with those derived using average, gender-appropriate, and gender-inappropriate transfer functions. Differences in central waveform characteristics were demonstrated between men and women. Derived waveform parameters were significantly different from measured values [e.g., subendocardial viability index and augmentation index ( P < 0.001)]. A gender-appropriate transfer function significantly improved the derivation of some parameters, including systolic pressure and systolic and diastolic pressure time integrals ( P < 0.05). Generalized arterial transfer functions may not be universally applicable across all waveform parameters of potential interest, and gender-specific transfer functions may be more appropriate.