Hypertension, also known as high blood pressure or arterial hypertension, is a chronic medical condition in which the blood pressure in the arteries is elevated. f you have a family history of high blood pressure and heart disease, you will be more likely to have high blood pressure. Additionally if you are overweight you will be more likely to develop high blood pressure. Blood pressure is specified by two measurements, the systolic and diastolic pressures, which are the maximum and minimum pressures in the arterial system. The systolic pressure occurs when the left ventricle is most contracted; the diastolic pressure occurs when the left ventricle is most relaxed before the next contraction. Hypertension is present if the blood pressure is persistently at or above 140/90 millimeters mercury (mmHg) for most adults. Normal blood pressure at rest is within the range of 100–140 mmHg systolic and 60–90 mmHg diastolic.

Hypertension usually does not cause symptoms initially, but sustained hypertension over time is a major risk factor for hypertensive heart disease, coronary artery disease, stroke, aortic aneurysm, peripheral artery disease, and chronic kidney disease.


Dietary and lifestyle changes can improve blood pressure and decrease the risk of health complications. Lifestyle changes are recommended to lower blood pressure, before starting drug therapy.

  • maintain normal body weight
  • reduce dietary sodium (salt) intake
  • engage in regular aerobic physical activity such as brisk walking (about 30 min per day, most days of the week)
  • limit alcohol consumption to no more than 3 drinks/day for men and no more than 2 drinks/day for women
  • consume a diet rich in fruit and vegetables (at least five portions per day)


Medication is often necessary for people for whom lifestyle changes are not enough or are not effective. An improved life expectancy is associated with the treatment of moderately high arterial blood pressure with medication.

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