What Happens When You Skip Your Blood Pressure Rx

Heart disease, stroke, kidney disease and death risk may increase when blood pressure medications are taken improperly

(RxWiki News) About 5 million patients enrolled in Medicare Part D are not taking their blood pressure medications properly, according to a new Vital Signs report.

The reporta part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, analyzed data from more than 18.5 million people enrolled in Medicare Advantage or Original Medicare (with Medicare Part D prescription drug coverage) during 2014. 

Whether you skip doses or stop taking your medication altogether, not taking blood pressure medication properly is linked to a risk for stroke, kidney disease, heart disease and death, according to this report.  

Also, 7 out of 10 American adults who are 65 years and older are thought to have high blood pressure, yet about half have their blood pressure under control, this report found. 

The report also found that certain racial and ethnic groups and geographical locations had worse medication adherence. This was evident in American Indian and Alaska native, black and Hispanic groups, as well as in Southern U.S. states, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

On the other hand, North Dakota, Wisconsin and Minnesota had higher numbers of people taking their medications as directed. 

Speak with your doctor about safely managing your blood pressure.