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High Blood Pressure (Hypertension)

Hypertension is a very commonly diagnosed cardiovascular condition and is generally known as high blood pressure. This condition affects many people, and you may have family and friends who have this diagnosis.

A doctor or nurse will measure your blood pressure at your doctor’s visit. There are two numbers in a blood pressure reading. The diastolic (lower) number measures the pressure in your heart at rest. This reading should be less than 80. The systolic (upper) number measures the pressure at which your heart beats. A normal reading is under 120.

Find a Doctor to measure your blood pressure and, if necessary, discuss treatment options for hypertension.

Types of hypertension

You can develop one of two types of hypertension. Our cardiovascular doctors can determine if you have primary or secondary hypertension. Primary hypertension is the most common and has no known cause. Secondary hypertension causes are much like their name since the condition is secondary to another medical condition.

Risk factors that make you more likely to develop high blood pressure include:

  • African American heritage
  • Older than 60
  • Gender — men develop high blood pressure in their middle ages while women are more likely to develop it at an older age
  • Overweight
  • Family history


High blood pressure treatment for a healthy life

Your doctor can explain that there are really no symptoms for hypertension. Years can go by without it being diagnosed, which can lead to heart disease, heart attack, stroke, aneurysm, and organ damage. That’s why it is so important to have regular wellness checkups to measure blood pressure and monitor your overall health.

Treating these secondary medical conditions can help bring your blood pressure down to a normal reading. Primary hypertension is usually treated with lifestyle changes, such as diet, exercise, and quitting smoking. Prescription medications may also be recommended by your doctor to help lower your high blood pressure. Take our online heart health risk assessment, then talk to your doctor to have your blood pressure measured and treated for your health and well-being.

Dignity Health – Mercy Medical Center's cardiac care doctors in Merced, CA provide effective treatment to help lower your blood pressure.