Who Can Check Your Blood Pressure?

Your Primary Healthcare Provider

Your family doctor, nurse practitioner, or physician's assistant usually measures blood pressure at every visit. You should visit your primary care provider at least 1 time per year to check your blood pressure.

If you already have high blood pressure, you should visit your primary healthcare provider often until your blood pressure is controlled. You should talk to your healthcare provider about a schedule that is appropriate and convenient for you--every 1 to 4 weeks is recommended. After your blood pressure is controlled, you should plan a visit every 2-3 months.

An Internal Medicine Specialist

In some cases, you may want to visit a healthcare professional that has special focus in a specific area of medicine. Healthcare professionals that have a special medical focus may treat you for another health issue (like kidney trouble, for example) and also help you with high blood pressure. Here are a few examples of why you would visit a medical specialist if you have high blood pressure:

If you have a history of heart disease, you may see a cardiologist
If you have a history of kidney disease, you may see a nephrologist
If you have a history of diabetes, you may see an endocrinologist

Certified Specialists in Clinical Hypertension (Also Called Hypertension Specialists)

A hypertension specialist is a doctor who specializes in treating high blood pressure. If you have high blood pressure and are being treated for it but you are unable to get it under control, you may consider seeing a hypertension specialist.

There are about 1,500 hypertension specialists in the United States. To find one near you, you can click on the link below.

Click here to find a hypertension specialist.

You Can Also Check Your Blood Pressure

You can check your blood pressure every day, anytime, anywhere by using a home blood pressure monitoring device. Measuring your blood pressure at home will help you keep track of your blood pressure in-between your doctor's visit.

You should write down your blood pressure measurements and bring them to your healthcare visits. Your healthcare provider will be able to see what your blood pressure is doing in between visits and will be more informed for making decisions about your treatment.

Click here to download a blood pressure tracking sheet to help you record your daily readings.

Home blood pressure monitors can be bought at any local pharmacy. You should ask your local pharmacist for information on how to use them, when to measure your blood pressure, and what is an appropriate arm cuff for you.

You can buy a home blood pressure monitor at your local pharmacy for less than $75. (Hypertension experts generally do not recommend devices that record blood pressure at the wrist or fingers, because these have been found to be less reliable.)

Sources:

National Heart Lung Blood Institute. The Seventh Report of the Joint National Committee on Prevention, Detection, Evaluation, and Treatment of High Blood Pressure. https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/files/docs/guidelines/express.pdf

National Heart Lung Blood Institute. Primary Prevention of Hypertension. https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/files/docs/resources/heart/pphbp.pdf

WebMD. Medical Specialists - Types of Specialists. http://www.webmd.com/health-insurance/tc/medical-specialists-medical-specialists

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