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High Blood Pressure: Causes and Treatment

High blood pressure (hypertension) can be life-threatening if not effectively managed. It can increase your chances of stroke, kidney failure, heart failure, and other health issues. Modifying your diet, increasing your exercise, and starting medications might help you manage your blood pressure effectively. At CardioVascular Health Clinic, we are proud to provide next-generation heart care to our diverse patient population, helping them improve and maintain optimal heart health.

What is High Blood Pressure?

High blood pressure is a widespread medical issue where the pressure of your blood flow against your arterial walls is forceful enough to cause significant health complications.

Blood pressure is assessed by the volume of blood your heart pumps and the degree of arterial resistance. Blood pressure readings are measured in millimeters of mercury (mm Hg). They have two numbers -- a top number and a bottom number.

  • Systolic pressure: Systolic pressure is the top number. This number measures arterial pressure during heartbeats.
  • Diastolic pressure: Diastolic pressure is the bottom number. This lower number measures arterial pressure between heartbeats.

It is possible to have asymptomatic high blood pressure for years. High blood pressure raises your risk of major health issues, including cardiac arrest and stroke, when left unchecked. However, high blood pressure can be quickly diagnosed. And when you find out that you have high blood pressure, you can manage it under the supervision of your doctor.

What Causes High Blood Pressure?

The following factors can lead to high blood pressure:

  • Obesity
  • Overconsumption of sodium
  • Physical inactivity/sedentary lifestyle
  • Overconsumption of alcohol
  • Obstructive sleep apnea
  • High cholesterol
  • High-calorie diet
  • Smoking
  • Stress
  • Depression
  • Pregnancy

Approximately one-third of all Americans have high blood pressure, but it is disproportionately found in the following populations:

  • Diabetics, people with chronic kidney disease, or gout
  • African Americans
  • People with a family history of high blood pressure
  • Seniors

How is High Blood Pressure Treated?

Tests for high blood pressure might include:

  • 24-hour blood pressure monitor: This is a device that monitors your blood pressure throughout the course of a 24-hour period, offering a comprehensive view of your blood pressure.
  • Electrocardiogram (EKG): A fast and easy test that measures heart activity and shows possible high blood pressure-related heart enlargement. 
  • Echocardiogram: A sound wave test that shows signs of heart disease or other high blood pressure-induced cardiac abnormalities. 
  • Lab tests: These might include blood tests, urine tests, and cholesterol tests. 

Your doctor will advise you on the most appropriate high blood pressure treatment for your individual condition. 

High blood pressure treatment can vary depending on the cause. If you are diagnosed with secondary hypertension caused by a preexisting medical condition, you must address the causal issue in addition to your high blood pressure. Sometimes, treating the medical issue that caused hypertension will help to normalize blood pressure without additional medications or therapies.

However, many cases of high blood pressure are classified as primary hypertension – high blood pressure that doesn’t have a single identifiable cause.

High blood pressure treatment (primary hypertension) will probably involve lifestyle modifications that include:

  • Lower sodium intake
  • Reducing caloric intake
  • Regular exercise
  • Losing weight
  • Abstaining from alcoholic beverages

In severe cases, lifestyle modifications might not be sufficient. Medications that relax the blood vessels, lower your heart rate, and help your body release sodium into your urine might be prescribed. 

If you have concerns about your heart health, please contact our helpful representatives to schedule a thorough evaluation today. 

Patient Resources

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Testimonials

Professional staff working in a beautiful facility with great doctors who sincerely care about their patients. Without Dr. Schmidt's skill, I would have needed heart bypass surgery instead of a stent. Follow-up has been thorough. I can't recommend them highly enough.
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LeAnn Harner

Dr. Jim Melton and all the staff are fantastic. He is an excellent surgeon and his team is GREAT!!!! I just had surgery at the surgery center, I have only great things to say about my experience. Without him I really don't think I would be here to write this. If you’re looking for a good cardiovascular team, they are a 5 star for sure.

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Susie Brooks Harrison

Dr. Parsons and staff are amazing. He truly listened to me from the consult. Staff showed genuine care for my progress post procedure. I had my follow up appointment today so satisfied with results. Blake made me comfortable from the start. He is an activist for uterine fibroids treatment beyond the standard.

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Tamara Means

Professional and caring staff. Dr. Smith is very knowledgeable and shows genuine concern for your personal health. I enjoyed the background music in the procedure room, it really adds to the relaxing atmosphere.

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David Lambert

Dr. John Schrader is the most personable doctor we know. He stays on top of my dads health care and is genuinely concerned about his health. We never leave his office with questions. He answers them all. Even questions we don’t think of. Always professional but never cold or bad bedside manner. In our opinion he is THE BEST around.
Thank you Dr Schrader.

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Kathy J

I came to Dr. Warren by a self referral for mals when it took me 8yrs 50+ doctors and thousands of dollars spent on no answers. My first visit I was scared I was just going to be gaslighted just like the past however I was pleasantly shocked when Dr. Warren immediately believed me. She took the time to review many disk I had brought from past tests. She never once dismissed me and listened to ever word I had to say. She scheduled one last test to confirm the diagnosis then I was scheduled for surgery right away. Surgery was a success and I can’t thank her and her staff enough. Dr. Warren truly saved my life.

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Angie W

Dr. Garner literally saved my life 18 months ago and I've followed him to his new practice with Cardiovascular Health. He explains things so clearly, listens and is just a very nice person. His staff is great, too! I highly recommend!

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D Watts

Some of the nicest staff that I have ever dealt with!! They have been so incredibly awesome to my mom!! Would definitely recommend them to anyone!! Thank you so much for being so great with her!!

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