Hypertension affects approximately one billion people around the world and less than a third of the population known to be hypertensive. It is considered a major risk factor for cardiovascular diseases such as myocardial infarction, cerebrovascular accident (CVA), renal failure and heart failure, among others. Hypertension is a chronic and silent, but early diagnosis and appropriate treatment to favorably change the natural history and prevent its complications.
What is hypertension?
It is the persistent increase in blood pressure above 140 (systolic or maximum) and 90 (diastolic or minimum), which results in long-term damage to arteries and vital organs. A single elevated blood pressure measurement is not sufficient to make the diagnosis of hypertension: that a person is considered hypertensive, must have had several high blood pressure recordings on different days.
How is your blood pressure?
It is very important to use reliable equipment. It is recommended that blood pressure measured in the arm. Digital or electronic devices for use in the wrist or finger, but are easy to use, are vague. In making the taking of blood pressure should take care to avoid the following errors:
- MUST BE TAKEN BY SOMEONE EXPERIENCED.
- THE MEASUREMENT SHOULD BE MADE WITH THE PERSON SITTING WITH YOUR BACK FLAT AND BARE ARM, EXTENDED AND SUPPORTED AT HEART LEVEL. AVOID THE SLEEVES ROLLED UP, CROWDING OR LUMP FORM, BECAUSE THEY ALTER THE MEASUREMENT.
- THE LEGS SHOULD BE FLAT ON THE FLOOR AND UNCROSSED.
- MUST HAVE PASSED AT LEAST ONE HOUR AFTER EATING OR SMOKING.
- REMAIN SEATED FOR AT LEAST THREE MINUTES BEFORE MEASURING.
- CUFF SIZE SHOULD BE APPROPRIATE TO THE ARM, AND SHOULD BE WELL PLACED ABOVE THE ELBOW.
Does each person always has the same blood pressure?
Blood pressure is regulated by multiple factors and varies with each heartbeat with stress, emotions, exercise, sleep, pain, etc.. This is normal and expected variations in these circumstances, so that there is only one pressure of each individual.
How often should blood pressure be measured?
It is recommended that all adults over age 20 control your blood pressure once a year.
What is the cause of high blood pressure?
In about 9 out of 10 people the cause is unknown. It is called primary or essential hypertension. This form of hypertension can be controlled with treatment to avoid its consequences, but no definitive cure. Remains controlled while complying proper treatment, although it may be necessary, over the years, the same adjustments.
In the rest of the hypertensive patients (one in ten), you can identify modifiable cause.
What are the symptoms of high blood pressure?
Unfortunately, high blood pressure rarely causes symptoms. Many ailments reported by people with hypertension, such as headache, lightheadedness, dizziness, fatigue and palpitations, are usually due to other causes. However, if you have any of them, you should consult your personal physician.