Blood Pressure “Out of Control” for Millions, CDC Warns

Millions of patients are taking medication for high blood pressure yet their condition is still out of control, according to a new federal report.

In fact, millions of people may know they have high blood pressure but don’t seek treatment or they are unaware of their condition, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report found.

“We have to roll up our sleeves and make blood pressure control a priority every day, with every patient, at every doctor’s visit,” said CDC Director Thomas R. Frieden, in a news release. “With increased focus and collaboration among patients, health care providers and health care systems, we can help 10 million Americans’ blood pressure come into control in the next five years.”

High blood pressure kills roughly 1,000 people every day. It is a major risk factor for heart disease and stroke.

The report estimates that one in three American adults – roughly 67 million people – have high blood pressure. Half of them do not have it under control, the report states.

Many – 16 million – already take medication, but still do not have it within a safe range.

A person has high blood pressure when it is greater or equal to 140/90 mm – Hg.

Federal health officials are urging pharmacists, nurses, dietitians and community health workers to help doctors identify and treat patients with high blood pressure.

In addition to take medication, patients can make lifestyle changes such as losing weight, quitting smoking, eating a healthy, low sodium diet and exercising.

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

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