Hypertension is Hazardous to Health


New Delhi: Hypertension, or high blood pressure, is an all too common cardiovascular disease. Close to one-third of adults have one form of hypertension. As we age, the likelihood that we will develop hypertension increases. When your blood pressure is read, the systolic pressure represents the pressure in the arteries that is generated when the heart ventricles contract. The diastolic pressure is the pressure in the arteries when the ventricles are relaxing and filling with blood. Pressure is measured in millimeters (mm) of mercury (Hg), written as mmHg. Normal blood pressure is categorized as less than 120 mmHg systolic pressure and less than 80 mmHg diastolic pressures. Normally, blood pressure will rise and fall as you go through the course of your day, just as your heart rate does.

Hypertension is a condition when your systolic blood pressure is higher than 120 mmHg and your diastolic blood pressure is above 80 mmHg, averaged over time. Sometimes, a patient may have elevated blood pressure in the doctor’s office but not at any other time. This is called white coat hypertension and may be credited to a person feeling anxious around all the doctors in white coats and the sterile environment. In this case, a doctor may prescribe a 24-hour ambulatory monitoring, which you can wear while you do your normal daily activities. By averaging your blood pressure while you are awake and asleep, a doctor can determine if you are normotensive (normal blood pressure) or hypertensive.

Types of Hypertension:

Primary hypertension: High blood pressure that has no identifiable cause.

Secondary hypertension: High blood pressure resulting from an underlying condition like kidney disease, diabetes, blocking of arteries, irrational use of medicines like painkillers, supplements, thyroid problems, heavy alcohol intake and sleep disorders.

Malignant hypertension: A sudden, rapid increase in high blood pressure is called malignant hypertension.

Resistant hypertension: This type of hypertension is unaffected by a single group of medicines and lifestyle changes. Here are all your queries answered about hypertension answered.

Isolated systolic hypertension: In this type, the artery become stiff and causes a rise in systolic blood pressure but the diastolic blood pressure remains normal.