Hypertension, also known as high blood pressure, is a medical condition in which the blood pressure in the arteries is abnormally high and elevated. Hypertension is usually asymptomatic and does not have any exact symptoms but people with high blood pressure often complain of headache, fainting episodes, vertigo, or anxiety.
HOW IS HYPERTENSION DIAGNOSED?
A general physician would usually use an inflatable arm cuff to measure blood pressure of the patient. Since pressure varies during the day the doctor would take two to three readings at different appointments. An ambulatory blood pressure monitoring or using a device to measure pressure over a 24-hour period could be recommended. Urine tests, ECG and cholesterol tests would also be advised.
HOW IS HYPERTENSION TREATED?
The goal of hypertension treatment is to lower high blood pressure and protect important organs, like the brain, heart, and kidneys from damage. It involves lifestyle changes and possibly drug therapy. Treatment with medication is recommended to lower blood pressure to less than 140/90 in people younger than age 60, and less than 150/90 in people older than age 60.
DID YOU KNOW?
The increasing prevalence of the condition is blamed on lifestyle and dietary factors, such as physical inactivity, alcohol and tobacco use, and a diet high in sodium. Hypertension itself does not cause symptoms but in the long-term leads to complications caused by narrowing of blood vessels.
In many cases there may not exist any exact cause of hypertension or acute high blood pressure as they grow over the years. They generally develop directly proportional to your regular health habits. Sometimes you develop a secondary hypertension which is caused due to an underlying condition present in your body. In this case the blood pressure levels are recorded much higher than that of primary hypertension or in some case pulmonary hypertension. Some of the conditions that can lead to secondary hypertension are:
1. Hypertension causes kidney and thyroid problems in your body.
2. High blood pressure causes defect in blood vessels and in particular those which are present at your birth.
3. Drug abuse like cocaine and amphetamines
4. Alcohol abuse and continuous smoking
5. Over the counter medicines you get like pain relievers and prescription drugs
6. Birth control pills and decongestants also included
The excessive blood pressure on the walls of your arteries can damage the blood vessels in your body. They can cause significant damage to the tissues and organs which may require taking urgent medical help from your doctor. If you are unable to control high blood pressure, it can lead to the following complications in your body:
1. High blood pressure causes trouble with memory power and also a lack of ability to think and understand properly. It is common syndrome if you have high blood pressure (or hypertension including pulmonary hypertension).
2. Sometimes high blood pressure causes your heart muscles to become weak and it may fail to pump blood into your body. This is a case of heart failure and requires immediate medical supervision.
3. Aneurysm is defined in medical terms as a case where the blood vessels weaken and can be a life threatening condition.
4. Blood vessels can get narrower or thicker near the eyes and can result in loss of your vision.
5. High blood pressure can cause a series of metabolic failures in the body. Cholesterol and high insulin levels can make your condition more likely in favor for heart attack, diabetes or even stroke.
Sometimes low blood pressure can also occur in your body with prolonged bed rest and with the over use of certain medications that treat hypertension and heart diseases. Nutritional deficiencies and blood pressure diet can also cause the recorded blood pressure to fall which would thus require medical supervision.
All medications and diagnosis should be done with the help of an expert guidance. You should note down all the personal and symptoms you have experienced when you visit a doctor. You should be prepared to discuss and follow the tests procedures and medications for your better health.
Lybrate offers you the best medical practitioners and cardiologists as well as pulmonologists related to high blood pressure diet and nutritional foods. You can also learn and discuss more about pulmonary hypertension with us in Jaipur, Jalandhar, Lucknow, Ludhiana, Mohali. Subscribe to Lybrate to know more about the high blood pressure diet plan and causes.
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