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Blood Pressure. The Dangers of High Blood Pressure. M edical term = hypertension . High BP= condition in which the pressure (tension) blood exerts on the walls of blood vessels goes up and stays high. Damages the blood vessels, the heart, and other organs.

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the dangers of high blood pressure
The Dangers of High Blood Pressure
  • Medical term = hypertension.
  • High BP= condition in which the pressure (tension) blood exerts on the walls of blood vessels goes up and stays high
  • Damages the blood vessels, the heart, and other organs.
  • High risk factor for coronary heart disease.
  • Highest risk factor for stroke )3rd leading cause of death in the U.S.)
  • Common cause of heart failure (leading cause of death in the U.S.)
  • Common cause of kidney disease.
symptoms of high blood pressure
Symptoms of High Blood Pressure
  • Usually no symptoms, many people don’t realize they have it.
  • High BP can only be detected with accurate, repeated measurements of a person’s BP
  • Can be treated safely and effectively, but only about one-quarter of people with high BP take necessary steps to keep BP within a normal range.
potential causes of high bp
Potential Causes of High BP
  • Smoking
  • Being overweight or obese
  • Lack of physical activity
  • Too much salt in the diet
  • High alcohol consumption (>1-2 drinks/day)
  • Stress
  • Older age
  • Genetics
  • Family history of high blood pressure
  • Chronic kidney disease
  • Adrenal and thyroid disorders
you are at higher risk for high bp if you
You are at higher risk for high BP if you…
  • Have family members with high BP
  • smoke.
  • are African-Americans.
  • pregnant
  • take birth control pills.
  • over the age of 35.
  • are overweight or obese.
  • are not active.
  • drink alcohol excessively.
  • eat too many fatty and/or salty foods
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Estimated to affect > 50 million Americans or about 1 in 4 adults

  • When BP is consistently high, the continuous increased force on blood vessel walls causes damage blood vessels and organs, including the heart, kidneys, eyes, and brain.
cardiac circulation
Cardiac Circulation
  • Coronary arteries deliver the blood that oxygenates and nourishes the myocardium
  • Cardiac veins drain blood from myocardium into coronary sinus which empties into the right atrium.
disruptions of cardiac circulation
Disruptions of Cardiac Circulation
  • Angina pectoris: crushing chest pain due to myocardial oxygen deprivation
    • blood supply to myocardium becomes inadequate if heart rate is too rapid
    • If HR is rapid, the relaxation periods when blood flows into myocardial tissue are shortened
  • Atherosclerosis: plaque made of cholesterol and other cells build up in the walls of the coronary arteries
  • Myocardial infarcation: “heart attack”/ “coronary”
    • Blood vessels to the heart are blocked, preventing oxygen from getting cells causing damage or death of the heart muscle
    • Can result from restricted blood flow due to atherosclerosis (likely during exercise or physical strain)
    • Usually caused by a clot that blocks a coronary artery – often if the plaque build up tears, blood stick to it and from a thrombus (clot)
symptoms of myocardial infarction
Symptoms of Myocardial Infarction
  • Major symptom = chest pain
    • Tight band around chest, bad indigestion, something heavy sitting on chest, squeezing or heavy pressure
  • Other symptoms include:
    • Anxiety, cough, fainting, light headedness, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, palpitations and sweating.
  • “Silent” heart attacks have no symptoms
risk factors for heart attack
Risk Factors for Heart Attack
  • Increasing age (over age 65)
  • Male gender
  • Diabetes
  • Family history of coronary artery disease (genetic or hereditary factors)
  • High blood pressure
  • Smoking
  • High fat diet
  • Unhealthy cholesterol levels
  • Chronic kidney disease
heart attack treatments prevention
Heart Attack Treatments/Prevention
  • Angioplasty and Stent placement:
    • Open blocked vessel using balloon catheter/guidewire
    • Stent is a small, metal mesh tube that expands in artery to prevent it from re-closing
  • Thrombolytic therapy
    • “clot busting” – drugs to break up clot w/i first few hours of chest pain
  • By-pass/ “Open Heart Surgery”
    • Take vein or artery from elsewhere in the body and use it to bypass blocked artery
  • Additional medicines:
    • Nitroglycerin: helps reduce pain
    • Anti-platelet medicine: help prevent clot from forming (ex. Aspirin)