Role of a family physician

Q: I have had (essential) hypertension for years. I am on eight rx’s and nothing seems to lower my blood pressure for any length of time. I take 8 pills a day for now, am 68, weigh 134 lbs, white female and am very afraid of what is happening. BP numbers range from 139 to 240 most of the time. I have been to three prominent doctors. Any suggestions?

A: Based on your number of medications, it sounds like you have more than one medical problem. You should consider consulting with a good primary care physician, such as a family practitioner or internist, who will look at all of your health issues. Sometimes specialists only treat the condition related to their field of medicine without regard to what else is going on in your body. As a result, care is not coordinated and people end up on more medicines than they need and have drug interactions that contribute to their problems.

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