ANCHOR LEAD: THE AMERICAN HEART ASSOCIATION RECOMMENDS HOME BLOOD PRESSURE MONITORING, ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS
The American Heart Association is now recommending that people with high blood pressure purchase a blood pressure monitor and monitor their own blood pressure at home several times a day. Rick Lange, a cardiologist at Johns Hopkins, concurs.
LANGE: This is something I’ve been recommending to my patients for years, and its just now becoming mainstream, and that is getting patients to take their blood pressures at home. We know that many individuals who come to the doctor’s office, their blood pressure is artifactually high, what we call white coat syndrome. :13
People who monitor their own blood pressure should also be aware of daytime variations.
LANGE: Blood pressure is usually highest between 6 and 10 in the morning, and then it declines, and then it goes up again between 4 and 6 in the afternoon, so its very important to take multiple blood pressure measurements, and in fact, the current recommendations suggest the individual ought to have ten or twelve measurements before we change the therapy. :16
Lange recommends bringing your own monitor in to your doctor’s office to calibrate it. I’m Elizabeth Tracey reporting.