Blood pressure Kit for home use
It has occurred to me that this is a terrible idea.
In fact, it’s possibly the least beneficial thing for the general health of a population to have gained momentum in recent years. I’m not discussing cigarettes or e-cigarettes or low-yield cancer screening procedures. I’m not talking about diet drinks or sugary drinks.
I’m talking about home blood pressure monitoring.
It’s a terrible idea.
OK, I get it. The idea sounds benign. Buy your own cuff. Monitor your blood pressure at home. Why? Well, it might be high. And, we need data. Lots of it. So, monitor away.
Of course, it’s never really about an idea or its intention. It’s about results. And, how this concept currently gets implemented is the number one cause of preventable panic attacks in my area.
You think breast cancer screening is inflicting unnecessary angst on the general public? It’s nowhere even close to blood pressure monitoring. I’ve even found this practice to occasionally worsen the disease state of hypertension. Yes, it literally makes some people’s blood pressure get worse!
Very soon, I may give up recommending the idea to anyone. In fact, I currently tell more and more of my patients to check it less and less at home.
I’m really not trying to offend anyone involved with the patient empowerment movement. These are the people laser-focused on proving medicine’s paternalism has long been the problem with health care. They claim the “asymmetry of information” between the doctor and the patient must be eradicated. We must democratize medicine. Patient’s should own their medical data, be informed of all potential outcomes, and be equal participants in deciding upon medical therapies they know far less about.
And, let me tell you, I’m all for the dispersion of power. I’m fine with you believing this will improve your health. But, I just see so many people supporting this kind of thing who really have no clue what they are supporting.
Good intentions begone, what matters are results. And, the results of this ongoing home blood pressure project are a disaster.