My name is Maggie.  I am 83 years old.  Five years ago my blood pressure was up and down a lot, and I was taking two medicines for it.  My doctor prescribed a blood pressure instrument for me  to use at home to take my blood pressure.  I would take my blood pressure  each morning and write the blood pressure readings down in a little notebook.  Every three weeks I would then take the notebook to my doctor at his office, and he would adjust my medications.   It was hard for me to get to the doctor, because I had to get my neighbor to drive me.  

One day my blood pressure started going up.  Over the next week it got a little higher each day, and I began to worry.  But my next appointment with my doctor was not until the following week.  I thought about calling my doctor, but I didn't want to bother him, because he's so busy.  So I just waited, hoping my pressure would go down.  Two days later I was awakened by a severe headache, and I couldn't see out of my right eye.  When I tried to get out of bed I collapsed on the floor and could hardly move.  I was taken to the hospital and was told I had a stroke.

Five years later I can now walk a little with a walker, but I still can't see out of my right eye.  I wish my doctor had known about my blood pressure that day when I had the stroke.  I think it could have been prevented.  I have now heard about a new way for doctors to keep an eye on a patient's blood pressure by using the Internet.  I think this is a great idea, and I believe it can keep other people like me from having strokes.  - Maggie  D. 12/20/00