What is hypertension?
Hypertension is defined as too high blood pressure. Although blood pressure depends on many factors such as weight, age, sex, etc, hypertension is considered when a person aged 50 shows a consistent systolic pressure of 14 and a diastolic one of 9.
When blood pressure is above 21 and 12, hypertensive crises are produced. These may seriously affect the body and require immediate hospitalization.
What do the figures with which we measure hypertension mean?
When measuring blood pressure two numbers separated by a slash are shown, eg 140/90.. The first number – the bigger – is the systolic pressure that is exerted by blood against artery walls when the heart contracts. The second number – the smallest – for blood pressure in the arteries when the heart doesn’t beat. (diastolic pressure)
Both are measured in mm Hg (millimeters of mercury) which is the height that the mercury reaches when being pressed by the force of blood.) The following table shows the values of the different blood pressure for people over 18 years.
Interpretation of blood pressure readings
|Systolic pressure||Diastolic pressure|
|Normal||Less than 130||Less than 85|
|Normal high||Between 130 and 139||Between 85 and 89|
|Mild hypertension||Between 140 and 159||Between 90 and 99|
||Between 160 and 179||Between 100 and 109|
|Severe hypertension||Between 180 and 209||Between 110 and 119|
|Very severe hypertension||210 or higher||120 or higher|
There are two types of hypertension:
- Essential hypertension: It is that which occurs for unknown reasons: This type of hypertension is more common among the hypertensive population. It can not be cured although it can be controlled by changes in food habits, in life habits, or a suitable medication.
- Secondary hypertension: It is that resulting from of an illness such as glandular problems or kidney problems, pregnancy, use or drugs. When these diseases are controlled, blood pressure normalizes.
Symptoms of hypertension
- In most cases no symptoms appear at the beginning.
- Symptoms that can occur are:
- excessive sweating
- heavy breathing
- pressure in the chest
- hands and feet that fall asleep or experience tingling
Is hypertension very bad for health?
The most serious problem of this disease is that in most cases, the patient does not know he or she has got it, so untreated hypertension can cause:
- Damage to vital organs such as kidneys, eyes, heart etc.
- In more serious cases it can lead to cerebral hemorrhage, thrombosis, etc.
More information about high blood pressure.
19 August, 2020