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During Know your Numbers! Week 2008:
At least 246,000 adults across the UK had a free blood pressure check. Only 24% of people tested had an 'optimal' reading. This means 76% (187,000) of those tested should be taking positive action to lower their blood pressure.
Across the UK, 38% (more than 93,000 people) had high blood pressure readings (at least 140/90mmHg) which needed further investigation. 72% (more than 177,000 people) did not know their blood pressure numbers.
Even 'average' readings across the UK fell into the 'high normal' definition (130/85 - 139/89mmHg). This has serious implications for the future health of the population. For example, someone with a BP of 135/85mmHg is twice as likely to have a stroke or develop heart disease as someone with an optimal BP.
Readings for South East England are as follows:
|Area||No. of readings returned||Mean systolic||Mean diastolic||% High reading||% High normal reading||% Unaware of bp numbers|