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Hypertension (High Blood Pressure): Overview

Blood pressure
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Video: Blood pressure

Hypertension

Dr Joe Kosterich discusses blood pressure, which refers to the pressure created in the arteries by blood as the heart contracts and relaxes.

For more information, see Blood Pressure.

 

What should your blood pressure be?

Blood PressureBP results are given as two numbers. An example BP result may be 120 over 80 (written as 120/80). The first number represents the systolic blood pressure and the second number represents the diastolic blood pressure. The diagnosis of high blood pressure or hypertension should be based on several BP measurements taken on separate occasions.

For more information, see Blood Pressure – Summary

What do the results of your blood pressure test mean?

Blood Pressure Calculator
This risk assessment tool is based on data from the National Heart Foundation´s Guide to management of hypertension 2008. It puts your blood pressure measurement into one of the seven diagnostic categories specified in this guide.
Age years
Gender Male / Female
Blood pressure* / mmHg
*Use current blood pressure, regardless of whether the person is on antihypertensive therapy.

Results

Normal
Your blood pressure should be rechecked within 2 years or earlier depending on your risk of developing cardiovascular disease. Your General Practitioner can advise you about this risk and also on lifestyle risk reduction.
High-Normal
Your blood pressure is elevated. It should be rechecked within 12 months or earlier depending on your risk of developing cardiovascular disease. Your General Practitioner can advise you about this risk and also on lifestyle risk reduction.
Grade 1 (mild) Hypertension
Your blood pressure is elevated. It should be confirmed within 2 months. Your General Practitioner should advise you about lifestyle risk reduction and/or medication to lower your blood pressure.
Grade 2 (moderate) Hypertension
Your blood pressure is elevated. It should be confirmed within 1 month and you may also need to see a specialist in this time. Your General Practitioner can advise you about lifestyle risk reduction and/or medication to lower your blood pressure.
Grade 3 (severe) Hypertension
Your blood pressure is elevated. It should be confirmed within 1 week and you may also need to see a specialist in this time. Your General Practitioner can advise you about lifestyle risk reduction and/or medication to lower your blood pressure.
Isolated systolic hypertension
Your systolic blood pressure is elevated. Depending on the level it needs to be confirmed within a certain time (140-159mmHg - 2 months; 160-179mmHg - 1 month; >180mmHg - 1-7 days).You may also need to see a specialist. Your General Practitioner can advise you about lifestyle risk reduction and/or medication to lower your blood pressure.
Isolated systolic hypertension with widened pulse pressure
Your blood pressure is elevated. It should be confirmed within 1 week and you may also need to see a specialist in this time. Your General Practitioner can advise you about lifestyle risk reduction and/or medication to lower your blood pressure.
Hypotension
Your blood pressure is lower than normal. Your General Practitioner will ask you about symptoms that you may be experiencing and determine if you require treatment or further investigation.


References
  1. National Heart Foundation of Australia. Guide to Management of Hypertension 2008- Assessing and Managing Raised Blood Pressure in Adults. Updated 2010. [cited 3 December 2014] Available from: http://www.heartfoundation.org.au/SiteCollectionDocuments/HypertensionGuidelines2008to2010Update.pdf

This information will be collected for educational purposes, however it will remain anonymous.

 

How to treat high blood pressure

Treating high blood pressureHypertension is defined as elevated blood pressure and is the leading cause globally of death and disability. It is the major risk factor for heart attack and stroke, and is also a significant risk factor for for chronic kidney disease and chronic heart failure. Treatment is dependent upon the severity of the diagnosis, the absolute cardiovascular risk profile and the evidence of end organ damage.

For more information, see Hypertension (High Blood Pressure)

Video: Lifestyle and high blood pressure

Blood PressureDr Lawrie Beilin discusses ways to reduce high blood pressure through lifestyle changes. 

Watch a video on Lifestyle and High Blood Pressure

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Dates

Posted On: 16 March, 2010
Modified On: 30 March, 2017

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Created by: myVMC