The duration and severity of the patient’s hypertension should be ascertained, along with the baseline blood pressure, medication use and compliance, and overthe- counter medications, as abrupt cessation of medications could lead to rebound hypertension. A detailed social history could, in some cases, reveal substance abuse such as cocaine, amphetamine, or alcohol use. (See Table 3.) In addition, patients should be asked about symptoms suggestive of end-organ dysfunction.
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