Nurse checking senior woman's blood pressure

Frequency and predictors of communication about high blood pressure in RA visits

Frequency and predictors of communication about high blood pressure in RA visits

Patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) have a heightened risk of cardiovascular disease. Dr. Christie Bartels et al. conducted a retrospective cohort study to determine whether having high blood pressure increased the likelihood of communication about blood pressure in rheumatology visits. The investigators identified patients in the electronic health record who had both RA and uncontrolled hypertension and who received both primary and rheumatology care, and then trained abstractors reviewed the RA visit notes to determine whether blood pressure communication occurred. They found that only 22% of RA clinic visits contained documented communication about blood pressure, and that patients with stage II elevation of blood pressure were not singificantly more likely to have documented communication. Action steps recommending follow-up for high blood pressure were documented in less than 10% of eligible visits. 

Press about the article was featured in Rheumatology News and Healio.

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