Blood Pressure Home > High Blood Pressure Information

When a person has an average blood pressure reading of 140/90 or above, he or she is said to have high blood pressure (hypertension). This condition occurs when the pressure within the blood vessels is consistently too high. High blood pressure is commonly referred to as "the silent killer" because its symptoms are often mild and nonspecific, meaning they could be caused by several different conditions.
 
Although in most cases, there is no identifiable cause for a person's high blood pressure, certain factors can increase the chance of developing it. Some of these risk factors cannot be controlled, such as:
 
  • Being an African American
  • Being a male over the age of 45 or a female over the age of 55
  • Having a family history of high blood pressure.
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In many cases, treating high blood pressure involves making several lifestyle changes, such as losing weight and following a specific diet, or using certain blood pressure medications.
 
(For more detailed information on possible causes and risk factors, as well as potential symptoms of this condition, click High Blood Pressure.)
 
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Last updated/reviewed:
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