Carle helping patients avoid high blood pressure with free screenings

URBANA--High blood pressure affects nearly a quarter of people in our community, and many may not know they even have it.

An estimated one in every four patients at Carle Foundation Hospital has high blood pressure. And since there is an array of health risks associated with the condition, health experts here are doing what they can to make sure people know their number.

Doctors say a healthy blood pressure should be lower than 140 over 90.

Anything higher runs the risk of medical complications that include kidney problems, heart disease, and stroke.

Experts say consuming a lot of salt can cause your blood pressure to rise, while exercising and eating healthy can keep it where it should be.

But you won't know what your number is unless you get screened.

"You know if you have a sore throat it's a problem and you're going to try and figure out what's going on," said Dr. Robert Healy, Carle's chief medical quality officer. "High blood pressure can go years and years doing damage to your body and you don't even know about it."

To help people figure out their number, Carle is hosting free screenings Thursday from 10 am to 2 pm at the Market Place Mall in Champaign.

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