High Blood Pressure or Hypertension (HTN)

An estimated 36 million people in the USA are suspected of having high blood pressure and 63% are thought to be unaware of this status. Of these noted people, only 45% are currently being treated, with a mere 34% of these being adequately controlled. This represents a potential vast group of people that later in life will suffer the consequences of this very common disease state or condition.

Elevated blood pressure (hypertension) or high blood pressure is one of the most readily treatable conditions today often with lifestyle changes such as dietary intake modification, regular exercise, alcohol moderation, minimizing or hopefully not smoking and weight reduction. It is also one of the most likely conditions to be undiagnosed, untreated or undertreated. When exercise and lifestyle modifications do not lower the blood pressure adequately there are many safe prescription medications that can treat the blood pressure with minimal side effects.

Often those who do know they have high blood pressure, choose not to have it treated because typically there are no identifying symptoms. They incorrectly assume since there are no warning signs that they are okay and need not heed the advice of their provider. They many times do not understand the potential ramifications of untreated or undertreated high blood pressure.  Prolonged high blood pressure puts a constant strain on the left side of the heart which over time will cause the hearts muscle to grow (hypertrophy) in response.  Over time this unequal increased load will weaken the heart muscle and this is a bad situation. Prolonged high blood pressure also wreaks havoc on the blood vessels throughout the body, the kidneys, the eyes, the brain, the heart and most other end organs.  Heart disease is the number one killer in the United States and one of the most common reasons is prolonged uncontrolled hypertension.

We suggest that people stop in for a blood pressure check. If your blood pressure (BP) is found to be elevated. We will suggest two more readings at a minimum and lifestyle modification measures before instituting medications. We also strongly advise those with a family history of high blood pressure to get checked often because it has a very strong familial or genetic component.