Karen Shackelford, MD, is a former writer for Verywell Health covering hypertension and blood pressure issues. She is an emergency medicine physician with additional training in internal medicine. Since 1995, Dr. Shackelford has helped patients with immediate care of blood pressure emergencies and long term management of blood pressure problems. In addition to clinical expertise, Dr. Shackelford develops medical education courses and writes for several major online health publications.
Dr. Shackelford has a BS from Millsaps College in Jackson, Mississippi. She has an MD from the University of Mississippi School of Medicine, and completed her residency in Emergency Medicine at the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson, Mississippi.
High blood pressure is a national epidemic that affects approximately one in four American adults. The importance of treating high blood pressure is evident when we count the costs of untreated hypertension: heart failure, kidney disease, and stroke are just a few of the significant complications of chronic hypertension. It's important to understand the disease of hypertension, to modify your risk factors and minimize serious health consequences.