One in three Americans aged 20 and over, or 74.5 million people, are believed to have hypertension. Only 79.6% of people with hypertension are aware that they have it, only 70% are believed to be receiving treatment, and only 47.8% have their blood pressure under control. Additionally, prehypertensive is a classification that applies to about 25% of adult Americans.
According to research findings that were published in the journal Circulation, those who maintain or lower their blood pressure around middle age have a lower lifetime risk of cardiovascular disease.
According to findings from a recent study by the National Institutes of Health, 19% of emerging adults (aged 24 to 32 years) have hypertension, and most of them are entirely ignorant of their condition. Hypertension is affecting people earlier and earlier in life.
Thankfully, hypertension is effectively manageable. Early intervention, adherence to dietary recommendations, use of pharmacologic therapy when necessary, and regular blood pressure monitoring are essential to the condition’s successful treatment. Therefore, it is crucial for patients to have a trustworthy blood pressure monitor on hand.
Who Should Use a Blood Pressure Monitor?
The optimum blood pressure monitor for each patient’s needs should be chosen with their help, and pharmacists should make sure that each patient is adequately instructed on how to use their monitor.
All patients with hypertension are advised by the American Heart Association to have at-home blood pressure monitoring as it’s an emergency medical product, but the following patient populations are thought to benefit most from this practice:
- Patients starting antihypertensive medication therapy (to determine effectiveness of therapy)
- Patients who require more frequent monitoring in addition to sporadic doctor office appointments (ie, patients with coronary heart disease, diabetes, or renal disease)
- Patients who have had high blood pressure readings at the doctor’s office to confirm actual hypertension and rule out “white coat syndrome.”
- Women who are pregnant, as preeclampsia can develop quickly
- Patients who are elderly, as the white coat effect becomes stronger with age
- Patients who may be hiding their hypertension
- patients with a history of hypertension risk factors
Types of Blood Pressure Monitors
Mercury column, aneroid, and digital blood pressure monitors are the three different types of blood pressure monitors.
The two types of monitors that are most frequently used for at-home blood pressure monitoring are aneroid and digital.
Cost, cuff size, convenience of use, patient choice, memory functions, digital display size, reliability, and accuracy are among the elements that are often taken into account when choosing a monitor.
Many monitors have features like the capacity to store multiple readings, large display screens for improved readability, the capability to print readings, irregular heartbeat sensors, and pressure rating sensing. Some monitors have self-inflating and self-deflating cuffs.
Due to their simplicity of use, digital monitors are the most widely used monitors. They are accessible for the wrist or upper arm. To get reliable findings, patients should be encouraged to buy an arm monitor with a cuff size that will fit the circumference of their upper arm.
Aneroid monitors are typically very inexpensive, lightweight, and portable. To achieve reliable findings, it is essential to teach patients how to utilize these monitors. In order to save the patient from having to hold the diaphragm bell in place, many aneroid monitors have a stethoscope attached to the cuff. In a few monitors, the gauge is also joined to the inflating bulb for simpler handling. Having excellent vision, hearing, and manual dexterity are all necessary for accurate readings on standard aneroid monitors. For easy reading, patients with poor vision may choose an aneroid meter with large print on the gauge face.
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