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Home Health Monitoring May Significantly Improve Blood Pressure Control, Kaiser Permanente Study Finds

Fri, 05/21/2010 - 9:37am
Bio-Medicine.Org

DENVER and REDMOND, Wash., May 21 /PRNewswire/ -- The use of at-home blood pressure monitors and web-based reporting tools that connect clinicians and patients via the Internet appears to significantly improve patients' ability to manage their high blood pressure to healthy levels, according to research from Kaiser Permanente.

The study, led by Kaiser Permanente Colorado in collaboration with the American Heart Association and Microsoft Corp., involved 348 patients with uncontrolled hypertension, ages 18-85 years. The initial study data was presented today by Kaiser Permanente Colorado researchers at the American Heart Association's 11th Scientific Forum on Quality of Care and Outcomes Research in Cardiovascular Disease and Stroke.

"Kaiser Permanente Colorado's Institute for Health Research is committed to studying innovative ways to make care more patient-centered in order to improve quality," said lead author David Magid, MD, Kaiser Permanente senior scientist. "While more research is necessary, our study suggests that using technology to engage individuals in their care at home may be a better way to help patients achieve a healthy blood pressure."

As many as 73 million Americans have high blood pressure (hypertension), a leading predictor of heart disease. According to the American Heart Association, approximately 69 percent of people who have a first attack and 77 percent who have a first stroke suffer from elevated blood pressure levels. The participants were randomized to a usual care group or a home monitoring group. All patients had their blood pressure measured in the medical office at the start of the six-month study. The usual care group was managed in a typical model that involved checking blood pressure during office

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