Mrs. XT walks into the pharmacy.
Mrs. XT: My #Pharmacist!, please come, let us talk.
Pharmacist: Good morning Mrs XT. How may I be of help today?
Mrs. XT: Sorry, my pharmacist, good morning. I don’t even know if to say good morning. What is good in a morning that took away my neighbour? Just like that, my Pharmacist. It’s like I’m in a dream.
Pharmacist: What happened? I have not seen you this shaken before.
Mrs. XT: You remember Mrs. AD? We came here together about 2 weeks ago. Her blood pressure was high. I recall you pleading with her to take her BP medicines. She was nonchalant. This morning, as she was preparing breakfast for her children, she slumped and died!!!. Mrs. AD is dead!!! Please help me to check my BP. Please, my pharmacist. I have laboured so much over my children. I cannot afford to die now. Please help me. I want to eat the fruits of my labour over them.
This is not a case in isolation. Just some weeks back, we got an invitation from a work-place to screen their members of staff for hypertension because one of their members suddenly collapsed and died as a result of high BP.
High BP popularly called #hypertension is described as a silent killer. It is so-called because many people with hypertension do not know they are or ignore it until they drop dead. Hypertension does not have symptoms. The best way to know if you are hypertensive is to have your blood pressure measured. You can walk into any community pharmacy to have your blood pressure measured and get right counsel from your pharmacist.
There is so much to learn about hypertension that we cannot exhaust here. Points to note:
#Hypertension is preventable through the adoption of positive lifestyles. Positive lifestyles may also contribute to reducing the blood pressure of those who are hypertensive.
Hypertension is treatable ie blood pressure can be brought under control, but generally not curable.
Uncontrolled or poorly controlled BP may destroy body organs like the kidneys or heart or may result in stroke or death. I, therefore, rather call hypertension a quiet destroyer than a silent killer.
Hypertension is generally not curable hence people with high BP are expected to take their BP medicines every day.
There are very many hypertension medications (antihypertensives) and many factors come to play in their choice. Hypertension treatment is individualized. What works for Mr. A may not suit Mr. B.
The way to know your BP status is to have your BP accurately measured using validated blood pressure meters.
If you have been diagnosed hypertensive by your doctor and placed on medication, please don’t stop taking your medication or change it without consulting your doctor.
If you have concerns about your blood pressure or medications please discuss with your pharmacist or doctor. It is not advisable to take the decision to discontinue or change your antihypertensive without recourse to the prescriber.
Find out from your pharmacist, all you need to know about your antihypertensive. You may wish to find out what side effects you may encounter and what to do if they occur; when best to take your medication and what to do if you miss a dose.
If you cannot afford your antihypertensive discuss with your pharmacist. There will always be a way out.
Hypertension does not like to be lonely so it’s fond of inviting its friends like diabetes and abnormal cholesterol. If hypertensive, you need to, routinely, check your blood sugar and cholesterol or lipids.
There are other laboratory investigations you may need. Please discuss with your doctor or pharmacist.
Remember God’s will is that you prosper and be in health. Your health is your wealth.
The information above is not intended to treat or diagnose any condition and should not replace your doctor’s advice. For more information please discuss with your pharmacist, doctor or mail us at flawal@victorydrugs.com.ng

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