Tips For Your Fight

Most people in the world may already know hypertension and have some idea regarding the related health problems that it may cause. However, what a number of people would not know (yet) is the causes of this health condition. Thus, the public should learn about these causes to avoid developing hypertension.

  1. Too much stress and anxiety.

  2. Sleeplessness

  3. Living an inactive lifestyle.

  4. Having the Type-A personality or being driven, aggressive, impatient, and perfectionist.

People should realize that it may take them a while before they realize that they have hypertension. Hypertension or high blood pressure is a health condition that gradually develops as time passes by. Basically, what happens is the excessive amounts of salts in the body diminishes the flexibility of the blood vessels.

For people who are diagnosed with hypertension, there are some things that they can do to manage their condition.

  1. HAVE A GOOD NIGHT’S SLEEP

Adequate amount of sleep can help in the regeneration and repair of the body. Hypertensive people should avoid drinking caffeinated beverages, such as tea and coffee. They may drink chamomile or jasmine tea instead.

  1. AVOID SALTY FOODS

Hypertensive people should avoid salty foods, especially during dinner. Dinner foods tend to contain high levels of salt and thus causes the body to retain more water. During dinner, people with hypertension may choose to eat oats in milk or milkshake to reduce their salt intake.

  1. DO NOT SMOKE

Smoking causes constriction of blood vessels, and such may eventually result in high blood pressure development.

  1. CONSUME MORE VEGETABLE JUICES

Vegetable juices help the body get rid of the excess salts in the body. Hypertensive people should try the juice made from celery, pomegranate, beetroot, and tomato.

  1. PRANAYAM

Practicing pranayam aids in lowering down blood pressure through reducing the stress knots in the body. Various kind of pranayams are aimed at energizing the body and helping individuals to remain calm.

  1. DRINK SUFFICIENT AMOUNT OF WATER

Water is used by the body to remove excess sodium through the kidneys. This, in return, can help in lowering the blood pressure of the body.

  1. CONSUME APPLE CIDE VINEGAR

A mixture of apple cider vinegar and warm water maintaining the alkalinity of the body and removal of excess sodium ions.

  1. CONSUME DAIRY PRODUCTS

Hypertensive people should drink calcium-rich products, such as curd, lassi, and whey beverages. These dairy drinks aid in lowering the blood pressure of the body.

  1. EAT FRUITS AND VEGETABLES

A healthy diet for hypertensive people should consist of at least 35% fruits and vegetables. This way the body does not take in additional amount of sodium, preventing the hardening of blood vessels.

  1. PERFORM PHYSICAL EXERCISES.

Exercises, such yoga, swimming, walking, running, etc., help in stabilizing and normalizing the blood pressure.

Bone Health From Blood Pressure Meds

Some of the common health issues that elderly people face are hypertension and weakened bones. And with such problems, aged people are also required to take considerable amount of medicine should they develop both conditions.

Fortunately, it seems that they may be already a solution to these health problems.

In a study involving Veterans Affairs and Medicare patients, the antihypertension medicine, thiazide diuretics, was found to decrease the risk of hip or pelvic fracture occurrence in patients compared with those who are taking other types of medicine for hypertension.

According to Dr. Caroline Messer, a reviewer of the study’s results and the director for the Center of Pituitary and Neuroendocrine Disorders at Lenox Hill Hospital, NY, treatment with thiazide can lower the excretion levels of calcium in the urine by as high as 50%.

In turn, treatment with the drug results in the positive calcium balance in the body. As a consequence of this health benefit, bone loss is slowed down, thus reducing the risk for bone fracture in patients.

The said study was supported by the US National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute and was headed by Dr. Joshua Barzilay of Kaiser Permanente of Georgia. Barzilay and his team were also in charge of monitoring 22,000 70-year-old patients.

In the study, the participants were involved in a critical trial, which was aimed at determining and comparing how different anti-hypertension drugs influenced the occurrence of heart diseases and heart attack risks. In addition, the patients were followed up for further examination for around five years

Results showed that the patients who took thiazide had a 21% lower risk of developing hip and pelvic fractures compared with those who were provided with either Lisinopril or amlodipine. Lisinopril belongs to a group of ACE inhibitor drugs, whereas amlodipine is included in a group of compounds known for being channel blockers.

Based on the results of thy study, thiazide should be used by people with hypertension.

However, according to Messer, thiazide is not always recommended as the first mode of treatment in patients. She emphasized that deciding on a proper medication should be different from case to case. Moreover, just like any drugs, thiazide is not without risks. Using thiazide as medication may lead to hyponatremia or increase the risk for falls.

Dr. David Friedman, the chief of heart failure services at Northwell Health Long Island Jewish Valley Stream Hospital, NY, supported Messer’s ideas. Though the data obtained from the said study showed positive results for thiazide diuretics, risk and benefit analysis should be conducted for each patient before recommending the drug to them.

Hypertension Common Cause For Medical Care

In Central Alabama, it seems that people seek medical attention primarily because of hypertension, as indicated in recent health index published by the Blue Cross Blue Shield.

According to Dr. Pankaj Arora of UAB Division of Cardiology, lifestyle is a great factor that determines the risk of hypertension development in people. This is also especially true in Alabama. Likewise, Dr. Arora added that people normally develop hypertension because they do not exercise and eat health food. Moreover, smoking also contributes to the onset of hypertension.

As indicated by Dr. Arora, a number of people do not realize that they are suffering from hypertension. Thus, the first action that experts must take to decrease the numbers of people with high blood pressure is to increase the awareness of the public.

During clinical visits, blood pressure of patients is usually checked. However, people should not only rely on their clinical visits just to check their blood pressure. They should monitor their blood pressure regularly to check any changes that may be indicative of hypertension. People can have their blood pressure checked up for free in pharmacies.

According to Dr. Arora, with regular monitoring, people will become more aware of their blood pressure and will realize when they have developed hypertension. This way, people will have higher chances of preventing the onset of such condition. People should realize how serious is the current problem in hypertension, as it causes around 1,100 deaths in the US everyday.

In the numbers used for measuring blood pressure, the top one represents the systolic pressure. When people notice that their systolic pressure goes above 140 mmHg, then they must see their physicians right away. However, if the systolic pressure lies between 120 and 140 mmHg, it is indicative of pre-hypertensive condition. In such case, people should consider making significant changes in their lifestyle. Basically, lifestyle changes should include eating healthy foods and engaging in physical exercises. Moreover, people with pre-hypertension should monitor closely their alcohol consumption.

Hypertension is a dangerous health condition. It may lead to death if not managed properly. This condition may also lead to the development of other diseases, such as heart and kidney diseases, or cause stroke or loss of vision.

And with the coming holidays, the festivities will surely include the preparation of delicious foods, and a number of them are not entirely healthy for people. By now, people should consider the kind of food that they will eat and how much should go inside their body in order to avoid the onset of hypertension. For those who intent on attending parties or celebrations, they are advised to eat some light healthy snacks before they go out so they won’t eat much during the festivities. People are also recommended to walk for at least 30 minutes a day. Lastly, for those who are already in medication, they should not ensure that their medicine supply does not run out.

Genetic Link To High Blood Pressure

Statistics has shown that one out of three adults in the US has high blood pressure or hypertension. However, even with such numbers, only half of the individuals with high blood pressure are able to manage their condition. Moreover, a number of people are also unaware that they suffer from the condition. A lot of people also do not realize that hypertension may occur at an early age. Thus, given the number of unconscious people that it affects, hypertension has been called as the silent killer, causing around 200,000 deaths every year.

There are various factors, including the environment and genetics, that determine the risk of developing hypertension. However, people who have the condition can manage it by eating healthy meals and doing physical activities. Still, people should realize that doing those things are not the sole factors that can help them in managing or preventing the occurrence of high blood pressure. People with high blood pressure are also required to take medications, and they should do such thing for the rest of their lives because as of the moment, no known cure for hypertension exists.

Genetics is an important factor that contributes to a person’s risk of developing hypertension. Likewise, there are specific genetic factors that are associated with blood pressure management, and such factors have not yet been discovered and studied. The role of genetics in the onset of high blood pressure is complicated, and many factors included in the human genome are involved in this condition. Moreover, these genetic factors affecting hypertension may work individually or in cooperation with other factors.

At the laboratory of University of Toledo, a team of researchers studied hypertensive rat models to determine possible genetic factors that affect hypertension. The genes involved in high blood pressure were monitored in order to identify minuscule genetic factors or genome parts that are inherited from parent to offspring.

In the experiments, after the genetic factors had been identified, they were replaced in their specific genomic location in the hypertensive rats with genetic pieces that came from normal rats. The produced rat models were named as congenic rat strains. Thus, basically, the only difference with the hypertensive rats and the congenic ones is the replaced genetic material. The study aimed to monitor the change in blood pressure in the congenic strain rats to identify whether the observed genetic material plays a role in the management of blood pressure.

After the experiment, researchers observed a number of genetic pieces are also involved in controlling the blood pressure of the human body.

Each genetic factor in the any genome comprises specific DNA sequences, which are combinations of the four DNA bases: adenine (A), guanine (G), thymine (T), and cytosine (C). Around three billon DNA bases make up the entire human genome. There are cases when a base in a specific DNA sequence is replaced at the same location in another individual.

Meanwhile, any type of change in the DNA, how small or large, may lead to the occurrence of specific diseases. For instance, for a specific location in a genome, a person may have the DNA base A, whereas another individual may have C or A may be missing. Given this possibility, UT researchers aimed at observing DNA variations in the genetic pieces that they studied.

After the experiments, the researchers noted that a sequence, which is composed of 19 DNA bases, in a rat model with lower blood pressure is absent in another rat model that had higher blood pressure. The technique used in determining such sequence is CRISPR/Cas9. The process was also used to determine whether the 19 bases of the sequence play a major role in the observed differences in blood pressure of the observed rat models.

Using CRISPR/Cas9, the researchers removed the 19 bases from the low-blood-pressure rats. Their succeeding observation showed that the rats with the missing 19 bases had higher blood pressures. To expand their research, the researchers investigated whether the hypertension of the rat models could be treated upon reinsertion of the 19 DNA bases. After reinsertion, the researchers noted the decreased blood pressure in the rats with the reinserted genomic bases.

Thus, based on the results, genome surgery can be used to genetically address the causes of hypertension. However, as most people know, the common process of managing hypertension is through medication intake. Moreover, people with hypertension are required to take such medication their entire life. Basically, the approach used in the research focused on correcting the inherited causes leading to hypertension occurrence.

Hopefully, in the future, more research will focus on treating hypertension on humans, with focus on addressing genetic factors that contribute to hypertension.

Blood Pressure In Doctors Office

There’s a saying that when people get checked up, inside the clinic, it is highly possible that their blood pressure will rise. However, as observed, it seems that what is happening is just the opposite. It seems that during their doctor’s appointment, people’s blood pressure tends to be within normal levels.

Accordingly, such occurrence is termed as “masked hypertension.” To diagnose this condition, research says that patients must wear a monitoring device for at least 24 hours.

In study concerning masked hypertension, 900 individuals were included, and they were required to wear a monitoring device.

Based on the results of the study, 16% of the participants who were initially diagnosed with “normal” blood pressure at the clinic showed different results after further monitoring.

Joseph Schwartz, a professor of psychiatry and sociology at Stony Brook University in Stony Brook, NY, said that among the participants, working individuals who do not receive treatment for hypertension had been shown to have higher ambulatory pressure than clinic blood pressure.

Schwartz also emphasized that additional studies should focus on finding ways to lower ambulatory blood pressures.

As is commonly known, high blood pressure is associated with higher risks of developing stroke, heart failure, loss of vision, and kidney failure. Moreover, the health condition also causes thousands of deaths every year.

Ambulatory blood pressure is the blood pressure measured when a person is walking. According to the authors of the study, measuring ambulatory blood pressure may serve better in identifying health conditions compared with clinical blood pressure.

Difference in the measured ambulatory and clinic blood pressure may be more common with young, lean people. However, such difference is reduced as a person ages and reach the age of 60 or when an overweight person becomes obese.

Though monitoring the blood pressure of people for 24 hours may have good effects, it is not entire possible for all individuals.

Meanwhile, for people with high cholesterol, are overweight, or has a family with a history of hypertension, having diagnosed with a normal blood pressure inside the clinic may pose some benefits.

According to Dr. Gerald Fletcher, a spokesman for the American Heart Association, results of recent studies demystify the belief that ambulatory blood pressure tend to lower than clinic blood pressure. The origins of such belief can be traced back to the “white-coat-effect.” In white-coat-effect, it is said that a patient’s blood pressure tends to increase when inside the doctor’s clinic because of anxiety.

In the abovementioned study, the participants’ blood pressures were measured thrice during each three of the three clinical visits. The total blood pressure measurement is nine. The ambulatory blood pressures of the participants were also monitor within 24 hours. The readings were taken every after 30 minutes.

Participants of the study all belong to the working class and were not taking any blood pressure medication in the course of the study. The mean age was 45, and 80% were Caucasian. The study excluded retired and older people because their age group has higher chances of having high blood pressure.

Those who have already experienced having their blood pressure taken know that the measurement includes two numbers: the top number, which represents the systolic pressure or the pressure in the arteries during pumping of the blood from the heart, and the bottom number, which indicates the diastolic pressure or the pressure between heartbeats. The unit for blood pressure is mmHg.

Based on the data provided by the American Heart Association, the measurement of a normal blood pressure is 120/80 mmHg.

In general, results of the said study show that 16% of the participants have high blood pressure based on the results for their ambulatory blood pressure.

In addition, it was also shown that the ambulatory blood pressure was higher than clinic blood pressure by about 7 mmHg. Meanwhile, during the 24-hour monitoring period, diastolic pressure was 2 mmHg higher than that was measured during clinic appointments.

On the other hand, 1/3 of the participants showed a 10 mmHg higher systolic pressure during the 24- hour monitoring period compared with that was measured during clinic appointments. The same observation was observed for diastolic pressure of 1/10 participants.

Fortunately, high blood pressure is manageable. Hypertensive people can manage their condition by taking medications, following a healthy, and doing physical exercises. However, the only problem is that hypertensive people do not usually know that they have such condition because they do not feel anything out of the ordinary. Thus, people are advised to have their blood pressure monitored regularly to determine whether they have high blood pressure.

Life Expectation

Pulmonary hypertension is condition that can be characterized by the clogging of arteries, which are the blood vessels that are involved in carrying blood to various parts of the body. The normal transport of the blood from the heart to the lungs becomes obstructed when pulmonary arteries are subjected to high blood pressure. Pulmonary hypertension is caused by the intensive pumping of the right ventricle, leading to its own expansion and weakening. In extreme cases, pulmonary hypertension may lead to heart failure or death. If not addressed properly, the life expectancy of pulmonary hypertensive patients lies around 2.8 years on the average.

Fortunately, at present, there are therapies that are used to remedy the problem of hypertension in people.

Pulmonary hypertension may affect people of all ages, though the condition is considered to be rare and is more commonly observed in young adults and women. Some symptoms of the disease include shortness of breath, fatigue, dizziness, and difficulty in fulfilling tasks. People with pulmonary hypertension may also suffer from difficulty in breathing even at rest, irregular heartbeat, rapid pulse, shortness of breath, swollen abdomen, ankles, or legs; chest pain, and bluish lips and skin.

MANAGING PULMONARY HYPERTENSION

There is no known cure for pulmonary hypertension, which is a progressive disease. Thus, if not managed properly, the conditions of the people afflicted with the disease may worsen or eventually lead to death.

However, pulmonary hypertension is manageable and the progression of the disease can be delayed. Medications and healthier lifestyle can help people with the condition to increase their life expectance and lower the risk of developing heart failure or deteriorating general health.

A year after diagnosis, pulmonary hypertensive people have 68% chance of surviving. This probability then decreases to around 34% after another four years. Thus, diagnosing this disease at the earliest stage is very vital in extending the life expectancy of the people afflicted with it.

Preliminary diagnosis of pulmonary hypertension may include an interview regarding the patient’s medical history, physical examination, evaluation of symptoms, and detection of any abnormalities in the sound of the heart. The presence of bump or distension in the jugular vein of the neck, fluid retention in the abdomen, legs, or ankles, and bluish nail beds are also indicators of the health condition.

Other medical examinations are also used in detecting pulmonary hypertension. These tests include the following: Doppler echocardiogram, blood tests, chest X-ray, pulmonary function tests, a six-minute walk test, polysomnogram or overnight oximetry, ventilation perfusion scan (V/Q scan), right heart catheterization, pulmonary angiogram, and chest CT.

However, there is still confusion regarding the conditions that lead to the development of pulmonary hypertension.

FACTORS AFFECTING LIFE EXPECTANCY OF PEOPLE WITH PULMONARY HYPERTENSION

People may be affected with various kinds of pulmonary hypertension. Idiopathic pulmonary hypertension has unknown causes, whereas associated pulmonary hypertension is linked to various conditions, including clots, heart disease, hypoxia, parasite infection, blood disorders, AIDS, cirrhosis, connective tissue diseases, use of weight loss drugs, and presence of toxins in the body.

The type of pulmonary hypertension is used in determining the proper management plan that should be followed by the patient to delay the progression of the disease and prevent it from decreasing their overall health.

One study focused on the factors that affect the life expectancy of people with primary pulmonary hypertension. However, the highlighted factors in the study were not well defined.

The study included 34 pulmonary hypertension cases, and results indicated that age at disease onset, symptoms, or sex of the patient are not useful in predicting the life expectancy of pulmonary hypertension patients. Moreover, though radiographic evidence of cardiac enlargement and presence of right heart strain based on electrocardiogram can be used as factors of survival, the researchers noted that life expectancy of people with primary pulmonary hypertension may vary from case to case.