Health & Spirit

Get second reading if doc says your child has HBP

By Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D. on

In the 2002 movie "The Rookie," Dennis Quaid plays a talented pitcher who never made it past the minor leagues because of a shoulder injury. But he promises the high-school baseball team he coaches that he'll try out to be a pitcher again if they win their district playoffs, which they do. One night, driving past a roadside digital speedometer, he decides to see if he still has what it takes. He gets out of the car, walks back from the sign, winds up and throws a ball. The sign lights up ... 76 mph. Disappointed, he sighs and walks past it to retrieve the ball. Unseen, the sign flickers and the "7" turns into a "9" -- 99 mph, a serious fastball.

Luckily, he eventually discovers that he does still have it -- and the false reading doesn't keep him from pitching again. But there are times when not getting the right reading has more serious consequences.

A new study in The Journal of Clinical Hypertension found that many children who get a high blood pressure reading don't actually have hypertension. Researchers looked at data on over 755,000 kids ages 3-17 and found that although nearly 25 percent of them had an HBP reading at their primary-care doctor's office, less than half were confirmed with a second check. And only 2.3 percent of those kids had sustained high blood pressure over time!

So, if your child gets a HBP reading, test again and if it's elevated, monitor over time to see if it stays high. If it does, do whatever is needed to get it under control.


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Mehmet Oz, M.D. is host of "The Dr. Oz Show," and Mike Roizen, M.D. is Chief Wellness Officer and Chair of Wellness Institute at Cleveland Clinic. To live your healthiest, tune into "The Dr. Oz Show" or visit

(c) 2018 Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D.

Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc.

(c) 2018 Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D. Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc.


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