According to data from the World Health Organization (WHO), hypertension is a disease that affects about 40% of the World’s population above the age of 25. Also known as high blood pressure, it is one of the main aggravating factors for the development of cardiovascular diseases, which are the leading cause of death worldwide.
Hypertension is an asymptomatic disease, which produces no symptoms until a crisis occurs, which is when blood pressure is above 140×90 mmHg. It is therefore recommended that blood pressure be checked at least once a year, preventing serious complications such as heart attack or stroke.
6 Symptoms of High Blood Pressure
- Strong headache or Pain in the Nape (Back of a neck)
- Difficulty in breathing
- Excessive tiredness
When the patient has symptoms of hypertension, it is recommended to measure the pressure at the pharmacy and, if it is too high, go to the emergency room as soon as possible or take the high blood pressure medication indicated by the cardiologist for hypertension attacks.
It is difficult to identify typical symptoms of people suffering from this disease, and usually the diagnosis happens at random during a regular medical visit.
The repercussions of arterial hypertension are mainly felt by the vascularization of the target organs, such as the eyes. Hypertensive retinopathy, for example, is a vision disorder that occurs when blood pressure becomes extremely high in the most severe cases. Ophthalmoscopic examinations of vascular alterations allow alterations caused by hypertension to be diagnosed early, providing information about the severity of the disease and allowing an evolutionary follow-up of the lesions, such as retinal haemorrhages, microaneurysms, and other ocular problems.
However, if the patient has symptoms of hypertension, it is recommended to measure the pressure as soon as possible, and to see a doctor immediately if high, to receive appropriate medication, if possible by a cardiologist.
How Does The Doctor Make The Diagnosis?
The diagnosis of hypertension is made from the measurement of blood pressure, if possible more than once, by placing the metering equipment (properly calibrated) on the upper limbs with the patient seated. It should be performed at a health center by trained doctors or nurses. This is critical not only for the diagnosis but also for monitoring the treatment of blood pressure. The diagnosis should be made in conjunction with the patient’s history, the results of the physical examination and the value observed by the measurement.
As has been said, readings from 140/90 mm Hg (14 by 9) are considered high and deserve attention from both the patient and the professional in charge. For cases where the patient is already aware of the problem, measuring blood pressure with some frequency is essential, to avoid any negative surprise and possible complications.