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High Blood Pressure: What is it really?

10 Ways to Reduce Blood Pressure Naturally

Cause and Symptoms of High Blood Pressure

High blood pressure diagnosis: The safe and effective way!

High Blood Pressure Diagnosis Page #2

The Effective Treatment of High Blood Pressure #1

The Effective Treatment of High Blood Pressure #2

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High blood pressure diagnosis: The safe and effective way


High Blood Pressure Diagnosis Overview:

A high blood pressure diagnosis can only be made by measuring your blood pressure, which is a safe, simple and painless procedure. In order to measure your blood pressure, the health care practitioner will place an inflatable cuff around your arm just above your elbow.  Your arm is then elevated at about the level of your heart by a table or desk during the procedure.  The health practitioner will than put a stethoscope underneath the edge of the cuff in order to listen.  The cuff is inflated squeezing the main artery in the upper arm, which then temporarily stops the blood flow.  The cuff is then deflated slowly and steadily.  The doctor or health care practitioner will then note the blood pressure twice: (1) when the blood first begins to flow through the artery and you can hear the heartbeat, which is referred to as systolic pressure and (2) when the blood flow then becomes continuous and the heartbeat sounds can no longer be heard, which is referred to as the diastolic pressure.  This measurement of blood pressure is essential to a high blood pressure diagnosis. 

Measurements of blood pressure are usually done on several occasions to make sure that it is consistently high.  At the very beginning, it is usually measured in both arms as there is frequently a difference between the two.  The higher measurement of the two is usually used to determine whether treatment is necessary.  Measurements should usually be made after person has had a chance to sit quietly for at least several minutes. 

Sometimes, your practitioner may recommend measuring blood pressure at home.  This will allow you to measure your blood pressure several times a day at different times such as in the morning and evening.  However, blood pressure measurements at home are meant to supplement measurements of blood pressure at your doctor's office rather than as a replacement.  Home measurements are also helpful for making a high blood pressure diagnosis in that a person's blood pressure may be taken under a variety of conditions.  This is especially helpful for the doctor in making the high blood pressure diagnosis, but also will be very helpful in determining the best treatment for the person. 

Some home devices for measuring blood pressure are digital and do not require a stethoscope.  The measurements are made and automatically displayed on a screen immediately.  These digital devices are also very helpful for people who live alone at home or individuals with problems hearing. 

These home measuring devices really enhance the practitioner in the high blood pressure diagnosis and treatment process.  They are usually accurate.  However, in order to continue to provide accurate information to assist your physician with the diagnosis and treatment of high blood pressure, you should not use measurements made on either a finger or wrist.

Some information from The Merck Manual of Health of Aging 


Additional information and web page by Paul Susic M.A. Licensed Psychologist Ph.D. Candidate (Health Psychology) 

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