High blood pressure is sometimes called the “silent killer” because it can cause a heart attack, stroke, or heart failure; but it often has no symptoms, so many adults don’t even realize they have it. Gaylene Soloniuk-Tays, MD, is an expert physician who can accurately diagnose high blood pressure and help you manage it, so it doesn’t cause severe complications. To learn more, call Compassionate Family Care in Visalia, California, today, or make an appointment online.
High blood pressure, or hypertension, is a chronic condition in which the pressure inside your arteries remains elevated above normal levels. High blood pressure can lead to dangerous medical conditions because it forces your heart to work harder than it should and because the excess pressure can damage the walls of your blood vessels and cause a hard substance, known as plaque, to form inside them. As plaque builds up, your arteries narrow, forcing your heart to work even harder, and your blood pressure to elevate even further.
Left untreated, hypertension can cause a number of severe health conditions, including:
High blood pressure can also damage blood vessels in your eyes and kidneys, leading to loss of function in those organs.
In many adults, high blood pressure develops gradually over many years with no apparent cause. This is known as primary, or essential hypertension.
When high blood pressure is caused by an underlying medical condition, it’s known as secondary hypertension. Some of the causes of secondary hypertension include:
Alcohol abuse, certain medications, and some illegal drugs can also cause hypertension.
If you are African American, you smoke, or you are overweight, you have a higher risk for developing hypertension, and risk levels increase for all men and women as they age.
If you have high blood pressure, Dr. Soloniuk-Tays will design a plan to manage your condition based on your personal medical history, overall health, lifestyle, and other individual factors. Your plan may include:
Frequently, lifestyle changes alone can lower blood pressure, but in some cases Dr. Soloniuk-Tays may prescribe medication, such as beta blockers or vasodilators, to keep hypertension under control.
If you suspect you have high blood pressure or you are looking for expert medical monitoring of your hypertension, call Compassionate Family Care today, or book an appointment online.