Elevated blood pressure is an important risk factor for heart disease and stroke. Generally we get one or two blood pressure measurements taken when we see the doctor. This does not tell us what our blood pressure is doing throughout the day as we live our normal lives. This machine takes a blood pressure reading every 20-30 minutes during the day and night.
24-Hour ABPM plays an important role in evaluating “white coat hypertension” (where one has elevated BP at the doctor’s office but normal at home), hidden hypertension (where one’s BP is normal in the doctor’s office but higher during the day, and in looking at blood pressure patterns. For example, most peoples systolic BP decreases about 10%-20% during sleep. However, for some people BP might not drop during sleep and may even rise. These “non-dippers” have increased risk.
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The test is free for practice members and costs $99 for non-members.