This morning, I was awakened by a call to my cell phone from a new client whose sister had recently suffered a bleed in her brain secondary to untreated high blood pressure. The client wanted to let me know that her family "wouldn't be needing our help" as her sister had "taken a turn for the worse over night" and that her brother-in-law was at the hospital now talking with the physicians about taking his wife (and her sister) off of life support. Our conversation was brief, but the sound of her tears stayed with me through the day. It was a sad start to my Thursday. Though her sister did have diabetes, and was overweight, she was only in her mid 50s.
Then, in early afternoon, I reached out by phone to another client's office and was greeted by one of his support team, another woman in her mid 50s. She and I had interacted two years back when her blood pressure was reading very high and her denial about it was even worse. During one visit to their office, I had taken her blood pressure and decided, enough was enough, and I drove her to the emergency room. This time, I told her, you are not going to tell me you'll take care of it. She did go on medication and throughout the last two years, she has been working diligently at eating right, walking, and taking her medication. Today, she proudly told me that her doctor took her off her blood pressure medication! She has lost 40 pounds through a change in her eating habits and her exercise. Her total cholesterol was an amazing 150 with HDL and LDL in excellent ranges! I told her how proud I was of her and she thanked me for saving her life because, she said, "had it not been for you pushing me back when, I may not be here today."
Just one day, and two very, very different results for two patients with high blood pressure.