By Dr S Manoj
MBBS, MD (General Medicine), DNB (General Medicine, Cardiology), DM (Cardiology), MNAMS

High Blood Pressure or Hypertension is a most common clinical condition seen in day-to-day practise of any health care provider. Globally the prevalence of hypertension is significantly on the rise. The theme for 2018 on World Hypertension Day is “Know Your Numbers with a goal of increasing high blood pressure (BP) awareness in all populations around the world”.

Hypertension is the No 1 killer disease across the globe leading to fatal strokes, heart attack, heart Failure and chronic kidney failure. An estimate of 10 million lives are lost each year needlessly due to raised blood pressure.

Symptoms of High Blood Pressure:


It is a silent killer as it does not show any clear symptoms in many. In majority of subjects with Hypertension symptoms occur when the disease has caused advanced damage to various critical and vital organs like heart, brain, kidneys etc. At a later stage it would also cause some symptoms of headaches, sleepiness, palpitation, blurred vision, fatigue, dizziness, confusion, ringing sensation in the ears, breathing difficulty, irregular heartbeat which may lead to even coma and death.

More than 40% of the adult population older than 25 years have hypertension. The most surprising fact is more than 50% of them are totally unaware of their condition and some of them who are aware of their condition do not take any medical action for their blood pressure.

How to Detect High Blood Pressure


Undetected Hypertension remains a high burden on the society and periodic medical screening is the best way to detect Hypertension.

The greatest challenge remains in the detection of Hypertension. I believe that every health care provider sans specialisation need to check the BP of the patient regardless of his current ailment as early diagnosis helps in effective control and save vital organs from severe damages. Effective lifestyle changes coupled with drug therapy do wonders in treating blood pressure and it is totally possible to prevent tragedy of death in many families.

Categories Of BP in Adults

BP CategorySBPDBP
Normal<120 mm Hgand<80 mm Hg
Elevated122 - 129 mm Hgand<80 mm Hg
Hypertension
  Stage 1130 - 139 mm Hgor80 - 89 mm Hg
  Stage 2≥140 mm Hgor≥90mm Hg

I strongly believe there needs to be a sustained motivation and favourable response from those affected with Hypertension which is indeed achievable.   

“Today’s unhealthy behaviours are tomorrow’s risk factors. Today’s risk factors are tomorrow’s disease” 

Dr S Manoj is a senior consultant and interventional cardiologist. He consults at Kauvery Hospital, Venkateswara Hospital, Nandanam. Chennai.