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Sunday, July 31, 2011

High Blood Pressure - More Than 65 Million Americans Have It!

By Ricardo Henri


High blood pressure or hypertension refers to high pressure (tension) in the arteries. It does not mean overly excessive emotional tension, although emotional tension and stress can increase blood pressure temporarily. Hypertension normally has no symptoms, but it can create serious problems such as stroke, heart failure, heart attack and kidney failure. It causes the heart to work a lot harder and can harm the arteries, causing them to narrow a lot faster. It can also damage other parts of the body and is a major health problem in North America affecting 33% of Americans, according to the American Heart Association (AHA).


Hypertension, most commonly referred to as "high blood pressure", HTN or HPN, is a medical problem in which the blood pressure is chronically elevated and is considered to be present when a patient's systolic blood pressure is consistently 140 mmHg or more, and/or their diastolic blood pressure is routinely 90 mmHg or more. It can be designated as either primary or secondary and is one of the most common complex disorders, with genetic implications averaging 30 percent.

Hypertension can be a short term or lifelong disease, depending on the reason and is dangerous because it causes the heart to work harder than normal. Pre-hypertension is high blood tension between 120 and 139 for the top number, or between 80 and 89 for the bottom number. For example, blood pressure readings of 138/82, 128/89, or 130/86 are all in the pre-hypertension range. Should your blood tension be in the pre-hypertension range, it is more probable that you will end up with hypertension unless you take action to stop it. If you have this form of hypertension, you may not necessarily require medicine.


Many people may not be aware they have HBP until they have problems with their heart, brain, or kidneys. If it is not found and treated, it can cause the heart to get larger, which can lead to heart failure. With HBP, the heart works harder, your arteries take a beating, and your chances of a stroke, heart attack, and kidney problems are increased. If you don't have hypertension by age 55, you have a 90 percent likelyhood of developing it at some point in your life, according to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. Left untreated, it will cause the heart to eventually overwork itself to the point at which serious damage can occur. About 50% of people having first-time heart attacks and 67% of people having first-time strokes suffer from HBP.

Did you know, laughing heartily 100 times every day gives the same cardio results as exercising for 20 minutes?


Treatment is focused on lowering water retention and lowering HBP to normal bounderies. When you first start treatment, your physician may want you to come to the office on a regular basis. Your physician will review the information with you and determine if your treatment program is working or if you need to make changes to it. Among the sixty one percent who are under treatment, only thirty five percent have their blood tension adequately controlled. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, talk to your physician.


Hypertension is called the silent killer because it usually has no signs and is a risk factor for heart and kidney disease and stroke. HBP is not proportionly distributed throughout the population and occurs disproportionately more often in minority groups. High blood pressure rates are also rising among American youth, along with an epidemic of obesity. Hypertension in adults will usually be measured on at least two different doctor appointments before a diagnosis is ascertain. It can be treated with both lifestyle modifications, usually as the first step, and, if needed, with drugs. Diuretics work in the kidney and flush excess water and sodium from the body. Nearly 33% of American adults have high blood pressure. Once It starts, it often lasts a lifetime. Fortunately, it can be easily found, and once you know you have it, you can work with your doctor to control it.

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