Most people do not have symptoms until blood pressure is very high. Problems may be:
Blurry or double vision
Shortness of breath
High blood pressure is often found during a doctor's visit. If the reading is high, you will come back for repeat checks. High blood pressure will be confirmed after more than two readings over more than two visits.
A doctor's office can make some people nervous. This can cause higher than normal blood pressure. You may be asked to measure your blood pressure at home or in another location.
The goal of treatment is to lower blood pressure. The methods used may need to be changed over time. Choices are:
Lifestyle changes are often the first method used to lower blood pressure. Options are:
High blood pressure. American Heart Association website. Available at: http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/Conditions/HighBloodPressure/High-Blood-Pressure-or-Hypertension_UCM_002020_SubHomePage.jsp. Accessed February 10, 2021.
Hypertension. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: https://www.dynamed.com/condition/hypertension. Accessed February 10, 2021.
What is high blood pressure? National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute website. Available at: https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health-topics/high-blood-pressure. Accessed February 10, 2021.
Whelton PK, Carey RM, Aronow WS, et al. 2017 ACC/AHA/AAPA/ABC/ACPM/AGS/APhA/ASH/ASPC/NMA/PCNA Guideline for the Prevention, Detection, Evaluation, and Management of High Blood Pressure in Adults: A Report of the American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association Task Force on Clinical Practice Guidelines. J Am Coll Cardiol 2018 May 15;71(19):e127.
1/5/2018 DynaMed Plus Systematic Literature Surveillance https://www.dynamed.com/condition/hypertension: Whelton PK, Carey RM, et al. 2017 ACC/AHA/AAPA/ABC/ACPM/AGS/APhA/ASH/ASPC/NMA/PCNA Guideline for the Prevention, Detection, Evaluation, and Management of High Blood Pressure in Adults: Executive Summary: A Report of the American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association Task Force on Clinical Practice Guidelines. Hypertension. 2017 Nov 13. [Epub ahead of print].
Last reviewed February 2021 by EBSCO Medical Review Board
James P. Cornell, MD
Last Updated: 2/10/2021
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