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How often should I see my doctor for follow-ups?

        Health | Heart

Use the chart below to see how often you should see your doctor. Look on the left for the situation that applies to you and follow it across to see how often you need to see your doctor.

If This Situation Applies to You: See Your Doctor:
You're starting a new blood pressure medicine or changing the dosage or strength of your medicine. Within 1 to 2 months
Your blood pressure is under control. Every 3 to 6 months

Note: If you have any other health problems, you may need to see your doctor more often.

When you first start a new blood pressure medicine, your doctor will want to see you within 1 to 2 months. After your blood pressure has returned to a healthy level, you should see your doctor every 3 to 6 months for follow-up. Frequent follow-up will help you make sure that your treatment is still working.

After you have controlled your blood pressure for 1 year with medicine, your doctor will review your treatment plan. If possible, your doctor will try to decrease your dosage of medicine. Whether this is possible will depend on how many of the following changes you have made to your lifestyle. It will also depend on the extent of those changes.

  • You have started to eat more healthfully.
  • You have increased how much you exercise.
  • Your blood pressure has been under control as a result of your lifestyle changes and medicine.
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Don't stop taking your medicine or change your dosage on your own. In some cases, stopping blood pressure medicine too quickly can damage your heart and even cause stroke or death. Your doctor may continue to decrease your medicine in a slow, progressive manner. You'll need to continue seeing your doctor on a regular basis to ensure that your blood pressure remains under control. If your doctor doesn't lower your dosage, don't despair. It's key to your health that you take your medicine as directed.


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