Most cases of hypertension or high blood pressure can be prevented, yet nearly half of all adults are diagnosed with this chronic health condition. At Upper East Side Cardiology, Satjit Bhusri, MD, screens for hypertension at annual physicals, offers preventive health care that keeps your blood pressure in a healthy range, and provides customized treatment after hypertension develops. If it’s time for your blood pressure screening or you need ongoing management, call the office in the Upper East Side neighborhood of Manhattan in New York City, or schedule an appointment online.
Blood pressure is determined by the force of blood pushing against your artery walls as it flows through your body. Your blood pressure changes in response to variables such as blood volume, the amount of salt you consume, and the overall health of your blood vessels.
Some 5-10% of all cases of high blood pressure are caused by an underlying health condition such as kidney disease, thyroid disease, or a problem with your adrenal gland.
The remaining 90-95% of patients with hypertension gradually develop the chronic disease due to risk factors such as:
Dealing with constant stress also contributes to hypertension.
Hypertension is called the silent killer because it seldom causes symptoms. Most patients discover they have high blood pressure during their annual physical. If you skip routine exams, however, you might not realize you have hypertension until it causes a life-threatening event such as a heart attack or stroke.
Without treatment, high blood pressure damages the artery walls, creating spots where cholesterol can penetrate the wall and start to build up into plaque. This condition, called atherosclerosis, gets progressively worse, enlarging and hardening until it blocks blood flow.
Depending on where atherosclerosis is located, it causes:
The plaque can also rupture, leading to blood clots that can travel to other parts of your body, get stuck in an artery, and stop the blood flow.
When you have routine blood pressure screenings, your provider detects changes in your blood pressure at an early stage called prehypertension. At this stage, lifestyle changes may be enough to restore normal blood pressure.
For example, you may need to limit salt in your diet, eat more vegetables and fruits, exercise more often, lose weight, and stop smoking.
If lifestyle changes don’t lower your blood pressure to a healthy level, your provider at Upper East Side Cardiology may prescribe medication.
If it’s time to have your blood pressure checked, get adult preventive care, or you need ongoing management for hypertension, call Upper East Side Cardiology or schedule an appointment online.