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Masked Hypertension Is Hiding Your High Blood Pressure

By    |   Friday, 17 Jun 2016 05:03 PM

People who have different blood pressure readings when taken at separate locations could be at risk for masked hypertension. False readings could have adverse effects when hiding actual hypertension, or high blood pressure.

Masked hypertension might present as a normal blood pressure reading in the doctor’s office, but reveal its elevated state when taken outside of the office.

As many as 10 percent of patients may experience masked hypertension, according to Hypertension Research.

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The condition often affects men, young patients, and people who are stressed or perform increased physical activity. Smoking and drinking may also contribute to masked hypertension.

Diabetes, kidney disease, and other chronic conditions increase the risk of both hypertension and masked hypertension, according to Cedars-Sinai in Los Angeles.

African-American men, who are at increased risk for high blood pressure, also have an increased risk for masked hypertension.

The misdiagnosis leads to improper treatment and threatens a person’s health because the high blood pressure condition remains hidden.

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A quiet, comfortable medical clinic may lower blood pressure readings for some people who have more stress and anxiety outside of the office, the Mayo Clinic reports. A condition called white-coat hypertension results in higher blood pressure readings, partly because of the stress of visiting the doctor or being tested.

Many people detect the conflicting blood pressure measurements when testing their own readings at home. Having a home monitor helps resolve the issue. Doctors usually treat the condition based on the higher readings, or they will ask patients to bring in their home monitors to make sure they are working properly.

Masked hypertension can be discovered when special monitoring and testing takes place. Doctors may use ambulatory blood pressure monitoring to make a diagnosis over a period of time outside of the office. It provides a better overall picture of the patient’s blood pressure so appropriate treatment is administered.

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People who have different blood pressure readings when taken at separate locations could be at risk for masked hypertension. False readings could have adverse effects when hiding actual hypertension, or high blood pressure.
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2016-03-17
Friday, 17 Jun 2016 05:03 PM
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