High Blood Pressure in the US

A new study found that one-quarter of adults are unaware that they have high blood pressure which is a high risk factor for a hear attack and stroke; and many of those that know about their high blood pressure are not likely to have it under control. The study was published in the journal Circulation: Cardiovascular and Quality Outcomes.

“Despite all the progress we have made in having available treatment options, more than half of the people we studied still have uncontrolled high blood pressure,”  said said lead researcher Dr. Uchechukwu Sampson, a cardiologist at Vanderbilt University Medical School in Nashville.

According to the US National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, one in three adults in the US has high blood pressure. High blood pressure is when the reading is over 140/90 millimeters of mercury.

The study followed more than 69,000 men and women to evaluate how common high blood pressure was among them; 57 percent self-reported that they had high blood pressure. “Among those who did not report a history of high blood pressure, nearly a third of blacks and nearly a quarter of whites had high blood pressure but were unaware of it.” stated Sampson.

Those that were being treated were not likely to be taking drugs considered first-line treatments, suggesting that doctors and patients weren’t following medical guidelines on which drugs to use first and when to add more to further handle the blood pressure.

The researchers noted that the participants lived in the southeastern part of the country, which is known for having high rates of heart diseases. Even so the researchers found that obese people were more likely to have high blood pressure.

Doctors monitor blood pressure during routine visits, if you have any questions concerning your blood pressure or think you may have high blood pressure make sure to ask your doctor.

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