Control Your Blood Pressure with Online Tool

May 31, 2013
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According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), one in every three American adults has high blood pressure. That adds up to 67 million American adults.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), one in every three American adults has high blood pressure. That adds up to 67 million American adults.

blood pressure eHealthHigh blood pressure increases the risk of heart disease, chronic heart failure, and kidney disease. Many are able to treat it with medications; others through diet. Now they can add communicating online to that mix.

A new study by JAMA Internal Medicine found that people with high blood pressure who were able to communicate with their pharmacists online had better blood pressure control.

Researchers randomly divided 778 people with blood pressure issues into three groups. One group received usual care. A second was trained to monitor blood pressure at home. The third group received the monitoring instructions and was able to communicate online with pharmacists. One year later, the study found that 60 percent of the people who had online access to pharmacists were able to control their blood pressure. This compared to only 48 and 52 percent from the other groups.

Average systolic blood pressure – the top number in a blood pressure reading – was 134 in the pharmacy group versus 138 among usual care participants and 141 for the blood pressure monitoring-only group. A normal systolic blood pressure reading is below 120.

The study concluded that patients with more access to communication with their pharmacists were able to get their questions answered and take action, resulting in an overall lower blood pressure. 

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