Hi. I'm Dr. Leslie Thomas, a nephrologist at Mayo Clinic. In this video, we'll cover the basics of hypertension. What is it? Who gets it? The symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment. Whether you're looking for answers for yourself or someone you love, we're here to give you the best information available. Hypertension means high blood pressure. A blood pressure measurement includes two numbers. Those numbers are the systolic blood pressure and the diastolic blood pressure. Because of the pumping action of the heart, the pressure within the arteries cycles between a higher pressure and a lower pressure. The higher pressure occurs during the contraction of the heart's left ventricle. The higher pressure is known as the systolic blood pressure. The lower pressure occurs during the relaxation of the heart's left ventricle. This lower pressure is referred to as the diastolic blood pressure.
Hypertension can be diagnosed by performing careful and repeated measures of the blood pressure. Blood pressure categories include normal blood pressure, defined as a systolic pressure less than 120, and a diastolic pressure less than 80. Elevated blood pressure is defined as a systolic pressure 120 to 129, and a diastolic pressure less than 80. Hypertension is defined as systolic pressure greater than or equal to 130, or a diastolic pressure greater than or equal to 80.
Treatment of hypertension involves lifestyle modification alone or in combination with antihypertensive medication therapy. For individuals with certain common conditions, including cardiovascular disease, chronic kidney disease, and diabetes mellitus. Certain medications may be more advantageous to use compared to other medications. Deciding upon the best blood pressure to target, when to start antihypertensive medication therapy, and which specific medication or a combination of medications to utilize is highly individualized and informed by many factors.
High blood pressure is a common condition that affects the body's arteries. It's also called hypertension. If you have high blood pressure, the force of the blood pushing against the artery walls is consistently too high. The heart has to work harder to pump blood.
Untreated, high blood pressure increases the risk of heart attack, stroke and other serious health problems. It's important to have your blood pressure checked at least every two years starting at age 18. Some people need more-frequent checks.
Ask your provider for a blood pressure reading at least every two years starting at age 18. If you're age 40 or older, or you're 18 to 39 with a high risk of high blood pressure, ask for a blood pressure check every year.
If you don't regularly see a care provider, you may be able to get a free blood pressure screening at a health resource fair or other locations in your community. Free blood pressure machines are also available in some stores and pharmacies. The accuracy of these machines depends on several things, such as a correct cuff size and proper use of the machines. Ask your health care provider for advice on using public blood pressure machines.
Blood pressure is determined by two things: the amount of blood the heart pumps and how hard it is for the blood to move through the arteries. The more blood the heart pumps and the narrower the arteries, the higher the blood pressure.
For most adults, there's no identifiable cause of high blood pressure. This type of high blood pressure is called primary hypertension or essential hypertension. It tends to develop gradually over many years. Plaque buildup in the arteries, called atherosclerosis, increases the risk of high blood pressure.
This type of high blood pressure is caused by an underlying condition. It tends to appear suddenly and cause higher blood pressure than does primary hypertension. Conditions and medicines that can lead to secondary hypertension include:
High blood pressure is most common in adults. But kids can have high blood pressure too. High blood pressure in children may be caused by problems with the kidneys or heart. But for a growing number of kids, high blood pressure is due to lifestyle habits such as an unhealthy diet and lack of exercise.
The excessive pressure on the artery walls caused by high blood pressure can damage blood vessels and body organs. The higher the blood pressure and the longer it goes uncontrolled, the greater the damage.
High blood pressure, also called hypertension, is blood pressure that is higher than normal. Your blood pressure changes throughout the day based on your activities. Having blood pressure measures consistently above normal may result in a diagnosis of high blood pressure (or hypertension).
Your health care team can diagnose high blood pressure and make treatment decisions by reviewing your systolic and diastolic blood pressure levels and comparing them to levels found in certain guidelines.
High blood pressure usually develops over time. It can happen because of unhealthy lifestyle choices, such as not getting enough regular physical activity. Certain health conditions, such as diabetes and having obesity, can also increase the risk for developing high blood pressure. High blood pressure can also happen during pregnancy.
High blood pressure can damage your arteries by making them less elastic, which decreases the flow of blood and oxygen to your heart and leads to heart disease. In addition, decreased blood flow to the heart can cause:
High blood pressure can cause the arteries that supply blood and oxygen to the brain to burst or be blocked, causing a stroke. Brain cells die during a stroke because they do not get enough oxygen. Stroke can cause serious disabilities in speech, movement, and other basic activities. A stroke can also kill you.
Many people with high blood pressure can lower their blood pressure into a healthy range or keep their numbers in a healthy range by making lifestyle changes. Talk with your health care team about
In addition to making positive lifestyle changes, some people with high blood pressure need to take medicine to manage their blood pressure. Learn more about medicines for high blood pressure.
Blood pressure is the force that moves blood through the circulatory system. It is an important force because oxygen and nutrients would not be pushed around the circulatory system to nourish tissues and organs without blood pressure.
Just as important as providing oxygen and nutrients, the fresh blood that gets delivered is able to pick up the toxic waste products of metabolism, including the carbon dioxide we exhale with every breath and the toxins we clear through the liver and kidneys.
Blood itself carries a number of other properties, including its temperature. It also carries one of the defenses against tissue damage, the clotting platelets that prevent blood loss following injury.
The National Institutes of Health and the American Heart Association (AHA) cite normal blood pressure to be below 120 mm Hg systolic and 80 mm Hg diastolic. However, blood pressure changes naturally for many reasons.
The condition of the arteries affects blood pressure and flow, and narrowing of the arteries can eventually block the supply altogether, leading to dangerous conditions including stroke and heart attack.
The reading is expressed in terms of the pressure it takes to move mercury around a tube against gravity. This is the reason for pressure being measured using the unit millimeters of mercury, abbreviated to mm Hg.
A stethoscope identifies the precise point when the pulse sound returns, and the pressure of the cuff is slowly released. Using the stethoscope enables the person measuring the blood pressure to listen out for two specific points.
A person with a blood pressure reading of less than 90/60 mm Hg is considered to have low blood pressure. The AHA has stated that doctors do not usually consider this a problem unless other symptoms exist alongside it.
Blood pressure is essential to the body. However, it can become too high or too low. A blood pressure reading that is too high is called hypertension, or high blood pressure. This can cause a number of health issues and should be monitored with a doctor.
What do your blood pressure numbers mean?The only way to know if you have high blood pressure (HBP, or hypertension) is to have your blood pressure tested. Understanding your results is key to controlling high blood pressure.
Blood pressure numbers of less than 120/80 mm Hg are considered within the normal range. If your results fall into this category, stick with heart-healthy habits like following a balanced diet and getting regular exercise.
Elevated blood pressure is when readings consistently range from 120-129 systolic and less than 80 mm Hg diastolic. People with elevated blood pressure are likely to develop high blood pressure unless steps are taken to control the condition.
Hypertension Stage 1 is when blood pressure consistently ranges from 130-139 systolic or 80-89 mm Hg diastolic. At this stage of high blood pressure, doctors are likely to prescribe lifestyle changes and may consider adding blood pressure medication based on your risk of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD), such as heart attack or stroke.
Hypertension Stage 2 is when blood pressure consistently ranges at 140/90 mm Hg or higher. At this stage of high blood pressure, doctors are likely to prescribe a combination of blood pressure medications and lifestyle changes.
This stage of high blood pressure requires medical attention. If your blood pressure readings suddenly exceed 180/120 mm Hg, wait five minutes and then test your blood pressure again. If your readings are still unusually high, contact your doctor immediately. You could be experiencing a hypertensive crisis.
If your blood pressure is higher than 180/120 mm Hg and you are experiencing signs of possible organ damage such as chest pain, shortness of breath, back pain, numbness/weakness, change in vision or difficulty speaking, do not wait to see if your pressure comes down on its own. Call 911. 041b061a72