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10% of adults say they self-test BP

Almost 10% of the adult population are self-testing their blood pressure, a survey suggests.

People were more likely to have done so if they had a university degree, were retired, lived in an affluent area or had a chronic illness.

The study of almost 3,000 men and women found those who had tested BP at home were also more likely to have used other self-tests – for cholesterol and glucose, for example.

But the University of Birmingham researchers warned significant problems with self-testing remained, including inaccurate sphygmomanometers and lack of staff training.

Study leader Dr Richard McManus, senior lecturer in primary care at the university and a GP, said the benefits of self-testing included better control of hypertension and a reduced 'white coat' effect.

The study is published in the September issue of Journal of Human Hypertension.

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