High blood pressure, also called HBP or hypertension, is known as the silent killer because it often has no signs or symptoms. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as many as one in three people have hypertension, and only about half have it under control. You can keep your high blood pressure under good control with the help of a blood pressure specialist in NYC at New York Cardiac Diagnostic Center.
High blood pressure happens when the force of blood pushing against your blood vessel walls is consistently too high. Every time your heart beats, it creates pressure that pushes blood through your arteries, veins and capillaries. Your family doctor can monitor your blood pressure and even prescribe medication to keep it in check. But when you see a cardiologist for high blood pressure, you benefit from the extensive training and experience of a medical professional who’s focus is keeping your heart healthy.
Your blood pressure readings give your cardiologist at the New York Cardiac Diagnostic Center important information about your heart health. The first number in a blood pressure reading represents the systolic pressure, which is the pressure required to pump the blood out of your heart and into the circulatory system. The bottom number, or diastolic pressure, is created as your heart rests between heartbeats.
Knowing Your Blood Pressure Numbers
The average readings that indicate a normal blood pressure is 120/80 or lower. You’re considered to have high blood pressure if your systolic blood pressure is 130 or higher and your diastolic pressure higher than 80 and stays that high over time. Infrequent spikes may be nothing to worry about, but persistent high readings can lead to serious consequences, including a heart attack or stroke.
Some people experience high blood pressure readings only at the doctor’s office. This is known as white coat hypertension. If you fall into this category, you get so nervous going to the doctor’s that your blood pressure spikes. Your blood pressure specialist may recommend that you wear an ambulatory blood pressure monitor temporarily or check your blood pressure at home. The monitor records your blood pressure as you move around doing normal daily activities. It allows your New York cardiologist to get a more accurate reading of your blood pressure.
The Dangers of High Blood Pressure
Blood pressure typically rises and falls throughout the day, but if it stays high over time, it can damage your heart and lead to a lot of health complications. Hypertension can damage the walls of your blood vessels, as well as your organs. The longer this condition goes undetected and untreated, the greater the chance you may experience complications that may include:
- Coronary artery disease, a complication that can lead to a stroke or heart attack
- Weakening blood vessels that may bulge to form an aneurysm, which can be life-threatening
- Damaged blood vessels in your kidneys or eyes that can prevent these organs from functioning correctly
Conditions that develop because of high blood pressure are sometimes reversible with proper care from the best cardiologist in NYC. One example is left ventricle hypertrophy, which your cardiologist may be able to reverse once your high blood pressure is back under control.
Diagnosing High Blood Pressure
Your hypertension doctor takes several readings over multiple appointments before diagnosing you with high blood pressure. Readings may be taken in both arms and compared. Your doctor may likely suggest that you check your blood pressure at home as well. The best cardiologist in Manhattan knows not to rush into a diagnosis unless it’s an emergency, so it depends on the severity of your symptoms.
Other tests that your blood pressure specialist may recommend to be able to diagnose hypertension accurately include:
Risks of Developing Hypertension
Since hypertension is a silent killer and is unlikely to cause severe symptoms, you should always be aware of your blood pressure numbers. High blood pressure very often is hereditary, so if someone in your family has had it, the chances increase that you’ll develop the condition too.
Other risk factors include:
- Age. While children can develop hypertension, it’s more common as you age, since your blood vessels become weaker.
- Gender. Men under the age of 64 are at a higher risk, while women increase their risks over the age of 65.
- Kidney disease. This condition can cause high blood pressure as well as exacerbate already high numbers.
- Race. African Americans are at the highest risk for hypertension.
Controlling and Treating High Blood Pressure
Guidelines are constantly changing on how best to treat high blood pressure. Lifestyle changes may make the biggest difference in controlling your hypertension. Your blood pressure expert may recommend that you get regular physical activity, eat a healthy diet and maintain a healthy weight. Obesity, high salt intake, alcohol abuse, and inactivity are major contributors to hypertension.
If lifestyle changes aren’t enough, your doctor may prescribe medication to help keep your blood pressure at a normal level. The category of medication chosen depends on your blood pressure readings and what other medical problems you may have. Your cardiologist in Manhattan may need to try different combinations of medication to find what works best in your case. Contact us for an appointment.
If you have any questions for the best in class Manhattan cardiologist, top high blood pressure specialist or would like to schedule a consultation or appointment please feel free to contact Dr. Steven Reisman of the New York Cardiac Diagnostic Center and indicate which Manhattan office (Upper East Side, Midtown Manhattan, or Wall Street / Financial District) you would like to see the cardiologist for the hypertension treatment consultation.