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Step 12: You and your doctor are a team

The type of treatment and drug therapy you receive will depend on the severity of your high blood pressure and the presence of other medical problems.

Both you and your physician play important roles in achieving your health goals. Your physician is responsible for providing you with complete and accurate information about your health care and treatment. Your role is important too -- even though you may not feel symptoms, high blood pressure is a serious condition and it is very important that you understand and stick to your treatment plan.

Helpful Handouts

Before you leave your doctor's office, make sure that you ask the right questions. For a list you can print out and take with you, click here.

If you have problems with your medicine, do not stop taking the drug on your own. Talk with your doctor first. Most side effects go away over time, or your doctor may be able to change the dosage or prescribe a different drug. Stopping a blood pressure medicine abruptly and without consulting your doctor may increase the risk of blood pressure complications.

It is also very important that you maintain your follow-up appointments with your doctor and consider purchasing a home blood pressure monitor to keep track of your pressure between doctor visits.

High blood pressure can be controlled. By working with your doctor to follow your treatment guidelines, making healthy lifestyle changes, and staying informed about your health status, you CAN reduce your high blood pressure and decrease your risk for heart disease and stroke.


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Review Date: 6/8/2011
Reviewed By: Steven Kang, MD, Division of Cardiac Pacing and Electrophysiology, East Bay Arrhythmia, Cardiovascular Consultants Medical Group, Oakland, CA. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.
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