Do you ever wonder whether you have any symptoms of high blood pressure?
Almost one in three adults in the United States, or approximately sixty-six million, has high blood pressure or hypertension and as many as a third of these sufferers don’t even know it. That means twenty-two million people could be dying from hypertension and be totally unaware of the condition.
These numbers are putting crisis levels in the minds of medical professionals everywhere because hypertension is one of the most common diseases afflicting humans. Hypertension is an important public health concern, due to the direct correlation with the mortality and morbidity that is associated with this disease.
Some symptoms of hypertension are nervousness, blurry visual problems, dizziness, nausea and vomiting and pulsating headaches behind the eyes that occur early in the morning.
Hypertension, or high blood pressure, is a condition in which the patient has abnormally high arterial blood pressure which can occur without apparent or determinable prior organic changes in the tissues but can be attributed to organic changes due to nephritis, diabetes, or hyperthyroidism. Defining abnormally high blood pressure seems to be more quantitative than qualitative.
The documentation of elevated blood pressure needs to be checked on at least three separate occasions within a two week period to ensure that the blood pressure readings are accurate. A detailed history is needed to determine if this medical condition is shared by other members of the patient’s family.
If the force of blood against your arterial walls is too strong, it can cause damage to your arteries, heart, and kidneys, and lead to atherosclerosis and stroke.
If left untreated, high blood pressure can damage the delicate lining of the blood vessels. Once damaged, calcium and fat can easily build up along the artery wall, forming a plaque. The blood vessel becomes narrowed and stiff and blood flow through the blood vessel is reduced. The decreased blood flow is what causes the major damage and leads to other serious diseases.
Secondary hypertension that is caused by another medical disorder such as kidney disease or hormone imbalance accounts for ten percent of diagnosed cases. The other ninety percent has no specific cause which is termed essential hypertension.
Malignant hypertension is a severe and rapidly progressing form and requires emergency treatment with drugs to dilate the blood vessels. Hypertension can accelerates the onset of damage to the kidneys, brain, eyes and the heart. Hypertension increases the risk of myocardial infarction, stroke and kidney failure.
Hypertension is most common in patients who are African-American or elderly and it usually has no outward symptoms but can be easily detected by a routine blood pressure test. Statistics have proven that if at age fifty-five if you do not already have hypertension you will eventually develop it. Frequent monitoring of a patient’s blood pressure is the best way to determine hypertension. But there is no absolute rule to ascertain what blood pressure reading constitutes hypertension. A high blood pressure reading may only mean that a person is mentally agitated when the pressure is taken.
You may have found that just seeing your doctor can cause you anxiety or what is commonly referred to as white-coat hypertension. This reaction can elevate your blood pressure readings to abnormal. Even routine activities, such as attending a meeting, can raise your blood pressure to an abnormal reading. The stress of commuting to work, exposure to extreme cold or hot weather or drinking large amounts of alcohol.
Because high blood pressure does not cause symptoms unless it is severely high, it is called the “silent killer”. This condition can be attributed to hereditary tendencies, emotional tension, faulty nutrition, or hormonal influences. Hypertension develops slowly and if you are not aware of it, can cause serious organ damage if not diagnosed by a regular physical checkup with your primary physician.
Copyright (c) 2007 Mike Jennings