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Welcome to our health education library. The information shared below is provided to you as an educational and informational source only and is not intended to replace a medical examination or consultation, or medical advice given to you by a physician or medical professional.

What Is High Blood Pressure? (JNC-7)Presi³n arterial alta

What Is High Blood Pressure?

What You Can Do

  • Quit smoking

  • Lose weight

  • Eat healthier

  • Limit alcohol intake

  • Exercise

  • Reduce stress

  • Take your medications

  • Check your blood pressure regularly

High blood pressure is known as the "silent killer" because it often has no symptoms. Left uncontrolled, high blood pressure can lead to heart disease, heart attack, stroke, kidney disease, or blindness. Making some lifestyle changes and taking any prescribed medication should keep your blood pressure under control.

How Blood Pressure Affects Arteries

As blood moves through your body, it presses against the inside walls of arteries (blood vessels that carry blood to the body). Frequent high blood pressure can cause changes in the artery walls. The walls thicken and become rough, which leads to a buildup of plaque (a fatty material).

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Measuring Blood Pressure

Your blood pressure is too high if it measures 140/90 (140 over 90) or higher most of the time. The top number is the pressure of blood against the artery walls during a heartbeat (systolic). The bottom number is the pressure of blood against artery walls between heartbeats (diastolic).

 

Normal

Prehypertensive

Too High

Top (systolic)

Below 120

120-139

140 or higher

Bottom (diastolic)

Below 80

80-89

90 or higher

Date Last Reviewed: 2005-06-03T00:00:00-06:00

Date Last Modified: 2005-06-03T00:00:00-06:00

Jay L. Jordan, MD, is an experienced cardiologist and internal medicine physician who provides a comprehensive range of cardiac care services in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Glendale, Burbank, Calabasas and nearby communities. Take the first step in preventing and controlling heart disease with symptoms such as angina, arrhythmias, atrial fibrillation, cardiomyopathy, carotid artery disease, chest pain, congestive heart failure, coronary vascular disease, hypertension, palpitations, shortness of breath and stroke. Call Dr. Jay L. Jordan at 310-854-5493 or request an appointment online.

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