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High blood pressure, a silent killer

High blood pressure promotes the onset of cardiovascular diseases and strokes. The problem: most of the time, this disease evolves in silence, without the slightest symptom.

In France, one adult out of 3 is affected by high blood pressure and a large proportion are unaware of it. “High blood pressure is an extremely common disease, 30% of people do not know that they are hypertensive”, summarizes Dr. Christian Recchia.

A figure difficult to establish because this cardiovascular pathology often progresses masked. We speak of arterial hypertension when the value is 140/90* when the measurement is made in the doctor’s office and 135/85* during a self-measurement. High blood pressure is characterized by excessive pressure in the arteries which accelerates the aging of the heart and arteries.

High blood pressure is defined by a measurement. Generally, a blood pressure measured above 14 for the maximum pressure and above 9 for the minimum pressure should alert and must be confirmed by other measurements, at the patient’s home by following certain rules. High blood pressure is a disease that does not hurt and can be discovered incidentally“, explains Professor Béatrice Duly-Bouhanick of the arterial hypertension and therapeutic department of the Toulouse University Hospital cited by La Dépêche. This pathology is often qualified as “silent killer“.

How does it manifest? Most of the time, this disease evolves silently, it does not cause symptoms. “Sometimes it is associated with fairly unspecific signs: headaches, difficulty concentrating, dizziness, chest pain, shortness of breath, visual disturbances or ringing in the ears“, details the French Federation of Cardiology.

A healthy lifestyle

In addition to medical treatment, it is imperative to adopt good habits: avoid weight gain, slow down your salt intake, eat fruits and vegetables, avoid alcohol and tobacco, practice regular physical activity, etc

To set up an appropriate treatment, it is still necessary to know that you are affected by the disease. To do this, take the time to measure – or have measured – your blood pressure once a year with a validated electronic blood pressure monitor. In the long term, high blood pressure is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease and stroke. Hence the importance of regular screening.

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