Blood pressure often spikes at doctor appointments, a condition known as "white coat" hypertension. Now, new research suggests that getting just one reading in an intimidating environment is not enough to judge if someone truly has hypertension.
A report in the Annals of Internal Medicine finds that for two-thirds of adults with verified high blood pressure a single blood pressure measurement was not reliable.
If doctors are taking just one or two readings some people may be over treated for hypertension.
Researchers say a more reliable method is to average several blood pressure measurement taken in the office or at home.