Blood Pressure Testing
Blood pressure is a measurement of the force applied to the walls of the arteries as the heart pumps blood through the body. The pressure is determined by the force and amount of blood pumped and the size and flexibility of the arteries.
Blood pressure is continually changing depending on activity, temperature, diet, emotional state, posture, physical state and medication use.
The Joint National Committee on Prevention, Detection, Evaluation, and Treatment of High Blood Pressure recommends testing adults for high blood pressure every 2 years if their blood pressure is normally less than 120/80 mmHg.
Adults with high blood pressure or prehypertension should have their blood pressure checked every year or more often.
Performing a Blood Pressure Test
Blood pressure is usually measured while you are seated with your arm resting on a table. Your arm should be slightly bent so that it is at the same level as your heart. Your upper arm should be bare, with your sleeve comfortably rolled up.
Blood pressure readings are measured in millimeters of mercury (mmHg) and are given as two numbers. For example, 110 over 70 (written as 110/70).
- The top number is the systolic blood pressure reading. It represents the maximum pressure exerted when the heart contracts.
- The bottom number is the diastolic blood pressure reading. It represents the minimum pressure in the arteries when the heart is at rest.
Who Should Receive a Blood Pressure Test
Most people cannot tell if their blood pressure is high because there are usually no symptoms. High blood pressure increases the risk of:
If you have high blood pressure, blood pressure measurements can help determine if your medicine and diet changes are working.
Low blood pressure may be a sign of a variety of illnesses, including heart failure, infection, gland disorders, and dehydration.
Available to ages 18 and over at select Walgreens during pharmacy hours. A1C testing available only to self-identified diabetics. Subject to availability. Test results are not for diagnostic or treatment purposes and are not conclusive as to the absence or presence of any health condition. Recipients are encouraged to report test results to their primary care physician. Pharmacist consultation with patient does not constitute medical advice. For the Full Cholesterol Panel test, fasting for 9-12 hours of no food or drink (other than water) is required.
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