Because symptoms are not usually apparent, early detection and treatment for hypertension is crucial
WHEN was the last time you checked your blood pressure?
High blood pressure is a worldwide problem and major global health burden. It is also a big challenge right here in Malaysia.
Did you know that at least one in three Malaysians above the age of 18 is classified as having hypertension? According to the Health Ministry, hypertension is a silent disease, and a majority of cases in the country (in 2011, it was 61%) remain undiagnosed.⁽¹⁾
What’s more is that untreated or sub-optimally controlled hypertension can lead to increased cardiovascular, cerebrovascular and renal morbidity and mortality. It is the main cause of heart attack and stroke (the top killers in the country), and the second most important cause of end stage kidney disease.
There’s more bad news.
According to the World Health Organisation, almost 1.56 billion people (that’s 29.2% of the world’s population) are projected to have hypertension by the year 2025.⁽²⁾
Because of these alarming statistics, Omron Healthcare Malaysia has made it its mission to educate the public about the risks of this chronic disease, as well as the importance of home monitoring of blood pressure (BP) and understanding how to manage your BP.
“Omron Healthcare believes that promoting the prevention of lifestyle diseases such as hypertension can help realise a society in which people are better able to enjoy healthy and comfortable lives, ” says Jason Seah from Omron Healthcare.
Some simple lifestyle changes that you can adopt to lower your blood pressure include managing your weight, regular exercise and selecting a healthy diet – reducing salt intake and abstaining from cigarettes and caffeine.
But what happens if you are already suffering from high blood pressure?
What is BP?
Blood pressure is a way of measuring how much force is being exerted on the walls of your blood vessels as blood flows through them.
Systolic blood pressure (the upper number on the blood pressure monitor) is the highest pressure in blood vessels when the heart contracts/beats.
Diastolic blood pressure (the lower number on the blood pressure monitor) is the lowest pressure in blood vessels in between heartbeats when the heart muscle relaxes.
“Hypertension occurs when the systolic blood pressure is equal to/greater than 135 mmHg and the diastolic blood pressure is equal to/greater than 80 mmHg, measured during home monitoring, ” says Seah.
“If left uncontrolled, this can cause heart attack, stroke, dementia, kidney failure, vision loss among the serious consequences, and this is why it’s so important to monitor from home.
“In addition, home monitoring has been found to be useful in helping to check the effects of hypertension drugs, as well as detecting masked hypertension and symptoms that are hard to find.
“For these and other reasons, medical organisations around the world now stress the importance of home BP monitoring.”
Home BP monitoring allows you to make frequent checks and share the results with your doctor. Whether you are living with hypertension, or simply health-conscious, you can make monitoring your BP an integral part of your healthy lifestyle.
But is it accurate?
Digital monitors measure blood pressure oscillometrically rather than by auscultation, which is how your doctor usually measures your BP.
In auscultation, stethoscopes are used to take blood pressure by listening for heartbeat sounds which the doctor then uses to determine systolic and diastolic pressures.
Oscillometric technology, on the other hand, measures the vibration of blood travelling through the arteries and converts this movement into digital readings.
Omron digital BP monitors use the oscillometric method of blood pressure measurement. All Omron Healthcare Malaysia products are clinically validated and meet the highest standards of precision and reliability from trusted organisations such as the Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation Standard (AAMI) and the European Society of Hypertension International Protocol (ESH).
“Our blood pressure monitors are available in over 110 countries and regions, and used worldwide by millions of people and healthcare professionals. We offer a wide range of products to suit differing needs and keep innovating new technology and solutions in the heart healthcare field, ” says Seah.
Omron BP monitors also use Intellisense Technology which allows the devices to automatically personalise the cuff inflation to ensure fast, accurate and more comfortable measurements. The devices feature IntelliWrap 360° cuffs which are accurate, comfortable and intuitive. The preformed cylindrical cuff fits snugly, is easily wearable with one hand and gives you 360° accuracy every time.
From now till June 30, if you purchase an Omron BP monitor, there’s a bonus of winning cash back on your Touch ‘N Go card. With a minimum spend of RM200 on any Omron BP monitor in a single receipt, you can upload your receipt and answer the questions at www.omronanswernwin.com.
To find out more, go to www.omronhealthcare-ap.com/my/promotions. The first 1,500 contest submissions with correct answers will be rewarded with RM20 ewallet cash. Up to 20 grand prize winners will get RM500 cash back in their ewallets.
For more information on blood pressure monitoring, go to omronhealthcare-ap.com/my