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New Study Says Internet As Good As Drugs For Lowering Blood Pressure

Blood Pressure Monitor.Max Pixel/Max Pixel

People who base their health choices on what they found on the internet instead of talking to their doctors have long since been regarded with a generous amount of disdain. However, a new study suggests that using web-based counseling is actually just as effective at lowering blood pressure as taking actual medication.

The study was presented during the 66th Annual Scientific Session and Expo, which was held in Washington, D.C., The Washington Post reports. It looked at the cases of patients who enrolled in the website Heart and Stroke Association of Canada, where over 264 people diagnosed with high blood pressure and with an average age of 56 years old were tracked.

The groups were divided based on Web-based lifestyle counseling and Web-based control intervention, both of which involved different approaches to addressing systolic blood pressure. It would seem that the former method yielded better results than the latter, but both systems did accomplish the goal of reducing mmHg levels in the patients.

Robert P. Nolan from the Peter Munk Cardiac Center at the University Health Network is the lead author of the study and he calls web-based counseling e-Counseling. He confirmed that this method had similar results compared to having the patients take drugs in order to control their blood pressure.

“The electronic counseling (e-Counseling) intervention had an effect similar to that of adding an additional blood-pressure-lowering medication,” Prof. Nolan said.

As to what this so-called e-Counseling even involves, patients are given a variety of resources in order to help them cope with their health condition. These include interactive online content, as well as a few video and audio resources, MedicalXpress reports. Based on the results that the researchers got from the study, it would seem that the more engaging content yielded the best improvements in lowering blood pressure among the patients.

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