Medicine

Guidelines For Reading High Blood Pressure Changing

Guidelines For Reading High Blood Pressure Changing

Former CDC director Dr Tom Frieden, who is now the president and CEO of health nonprofit Vital Strategies, said: "We have to take control of high blood pressure worldwide".

Doctors in the guidelines stress the importance of using two separate blood pressure readings on two different occasions to diagnose hypertension.

But instead of recommending drug treatment right away, the organizations recommend that people with stage 1 hypertension try lifestyle changes first: exercising more, eating less salt, and eating more fruits, vegetables and whole grains.

The guidelines, often referred to as the 2017 Hypertension Clinical Practice Guidelines, will update and replace the 2003 guidelines published by the Joint National Committee on Prevention, Detection, Evaluation, and Treatment of High Blood Pressure.

The more stringent definition means the share of US adults with high blood pressure will rise from 32 percent to 46 percent.

Under new health guidelines for hypertension, almost half of all adults in the United States suffer from high blood pressure and are at risk of major health problems.

This level is classified as Stage 2 hypertension under the new guidelines.

High blood pressure is caused when the force of blood pushing against vessel walls is too high.

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As for patients with elevated (120-129/ 80 mm Hg) blood pressure or Stage 1 (130-139/80-89 mm Hg) who are otherwise healthy, the guidelines say they should make healthy lifestyle changes.

Doctors now recognize that complications "can occur at those lower numbers", said the first update to comprehensive United States guidelines on blood pressure detection and treatment since 2003.

According to a press release from the American Heart Association, although the rate of diagnosis will increase by about 14 percent, there will be only a small increase in patients who require medical treatment for hypertension.

Previously, one in three (32 percent) had the condition, which is the second leading cause of heart disease and stroke, after cigarette smoking. Diastolic pressure is measured when the heart relaxes between beats. Hypertension leads to cardiovascular disease, strokes, severe kidney disease and other maladies that kill millions of Americans every year. Blood pressure is affected by a wide variety of factors including genetics, age, diet, exercise, stress and other diseases such as diabetes.

The change is expected to have the biggest effect on men and women under the age of 45.

For the past 14 years, high blood pressure has been defined as 140/90, and approximately one in every three people in the USA are now diagnosed under this measurement. That study also showed many people can reach lower targets, Goff said. "It doesn't mean you need medication, but it's a yellow light that you need to be lowering your blood pressure, mainly with non-drug approaches". But there will only be a small increase in the number of US adults who will require medication, the authors of the guidelines said.

"White coat hypertension", which occurs when a person's blood pressure spikes while in the doctor's office, is a known phenomenon that can mar the test's accuracy.


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