Many patients report that they have elevated blood pressures when they go to the doctor’s office, but normal pressures when measured sporadically at places such as a grocery store. This is white-coat hypertension. Because sustained hypertension can have such bad effects on one’s health, differentiating white-coat hypertension from sustained hypertension is very important. This pamphlet is designed to help patients monitor their blood pressure to determine whether their elevated clinic reading is due to white-coat hypertension or hypertension. Patients that have persistently elevated office readings with no end-organ damage should first self-measure their blood pressure for at least 3 days at 12 hr intervals. If elevated, treatment may be initiated, and if normal, ambulatory blood pressure measurements are needed to rule out sustained hypertension.
The information provided in this handout does not necessarily reflect the views of the University of Minnesota Medical School physicians and faculty. These materials are provided for informational purposes only and are in no way intended to take the place of the advice and recommendations of your personal health care provider. You use the information provided in these handouts at your own risk.
Do I Have White-Coat Hypertension or Hypertension? : What you should do to check your blood pressure.
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