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Experts Lower “High” Blood Pressure Numbers

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Experts Lower High Blood Pressure Numbers

Global news collection 


You probably get your blood pressure checked every time you go to the doctor. Having high blood pressure increases your chances of heart attacks, strokes, kidney disease, and other serious health problems.
After studying the results from hundreds of studies, experts recently changed the definition of high blood pressure.


Blood pressure is measured in two numbers, like 120/80 mm Hg. The first number is the pressure that the heart uses to push blood through your arteries. The second number is the pressure when the heart is at rest between beats. Normal blood pressure for an adult is below 120/80.


NIH-sponsored research played an important role in providing evidence that the definition of high blood pressure should be changed. Before the guideline changed in November, the definition of high blood pressure was 140/90. Now, high blood pressure is defined as 130 or higher for the first number, or 80 or higher for the second number.


If you have high blood pressure, your doctor may suggest changes to your diet and physical activity. If lifestyle changes don’t work, medicines can help.

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“Only about half the people in the country who have high blood pressure are controlled to recommended levels,” says NIH heart disease expert Dr. David C. Goff, Jr. “We could prevent a lot more heart attacks and strokes if more people had their blood pressure well controlled.”

References

2017 ACC/AHA/AAPA/ABC/ACPM/AGS/APhA/ASH/ASPC/NMA/PCNA Guideline for the Prevention, Detection, Evaluation, and Management of High Blood Pressure in Adults: A Report of the American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association Task Force on Clinical Practice Guidelines

Whelton PK, Carey RM, Aronow WS, Casey DE Jr, Collins KJ, Dennison Himmelfarb C, DePalma SM, Gidding S, Jamerson KA, Jones DW, MacLaughlin EJ, Muntner P, Ovbiagele B, Smith SC Jr, Spencer CC, Stafford RS, Taler SJ, Thomas RJ, Williams KA Sr, Williamson JD, Wright JT Jr. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2017 Nov 7. pii: S0735-1097(17)41519-1. doi: 10.1016/j.jacc.2017.11.006. [Epub ahead of print]. PMID: 29146535.

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