Do you know how to measure your blood pressure?

According to the latest statistics, about 54 per cent of strokes and 47 per cent of heart disease worldwide are caused by high blood pressure.

High blood pressure is often called the ‘silent killer’, as many people have this condition without knowing it. Some only realise when it is too late - after they have suffered a stroke or a heart attack. Because high blood pressure rarely has any symptoms at all, the only way to tell if you have this condition is to have your blood pressure measured accurately.

Medical research shows that blood pressure should be measured over 24 hours. This is commonly known as Ambulatory Blood Pressure Measurement (ABPM ).

ABPM is a simple, non-invasive investigation. You wear a small device on your waist connected to a cuff on your arm for 24 hours. Measurements are taken every 30 minutes during the day and night.

The most important advantage of ABPM is the measurement of night-time blood pressure and the identification of ‘white coat hypertension’. Research indicates that blood pressure taken in a doctor’s surgery can show a temporary rise known as ‘white coat hypertension’, which can lead to a misdiagnosis. By having a 24-hour ABPM, this is avoided.

You can have an ABPM investigation carried out at Boots Athlone. Simply talk to your pharmacist at Boots and book an appointment to have the monitor fitted. You will return 24 hours later to have the monitor removed and your ABPM report instantly printed, which will include a graph of your blood pressure.

Contact your pharmacist at Boots, Athlone. Tel (090 ) 6476955.

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