Health Watch - Stroke: Blood Pressure

Health Watch is a Public Service of the Office of News and Publications and is intended to provide general information only and should not replace the advice of a medical professional. You should contact your physician if you have questions about any of these topics.

This week on Health Watch, we’re talking about stroke, in recognition of American Stroke Month. One of the major risk factors for stroke is high blood pressure. Preventing high blood pressure can help prevent stroke, but that requires dedication on behalf of both doctor and patient.

Dr. Shawna Nesbitt, a hypertension expert at UT Southwestern Medical Center, says that while lifestyle modifications are the first step in preventing high blood pressure, most patients don’t stick to the changes. Patients whose blood pressure is in the pre-hypertension range may need medication to help prevent hypertension from developing. Doctors recommend that people get their blood pressure checked regularly so high blood pressure can be prevented or treated before it causes damage. Lifestyle modifications like regular exercise, losing weight, quitting smoking and a low-sodium diet may help.

Visit to learn more about UT Southwestern’s clinical services in heart, lung and vascular.


May 2009

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