High Blood Pressure

Who All Can Have Hypertension (High Blood Pressure)?

High blood pressure is a silent killer. Often you know about it when it has already run the damage. However being aware of the risk factors that make you prone to it occurrence may guard you in advance.

It is a medical condition in which the pressure inside blood vessels gets chronically elevated. It can be classified into two types- primary hypertension (high BP) and secondary hypertension.

Primary Hypertension (High BP)   

This type of hypertension has no underlying cause. It is often a part of metabolic "syndrome X" in patients suffering from insulin resistance. Almost 90 per cent people of the world (mostly adults) suffer from it. While there is no underlying cause to it, there are a few risk factors which have been identified.

Age: With advancement in age the arteries in the bodies become stiff, resulting in increased blood pressure. So when you age you become close to this disease.

Insulin resistance: People who are suffering from the metabolic "syndrome X" have high BP. Thus diabetes brings you closer to high blood pressure.

Genetics: Family history of high blood pressure gets manifested in the next generation as well. So your hypertensive parents make you prone to blood pressure imbalance.

Obesity: Those with BMI greater than 25 are considered to be obese. Obese people face at least 5 times the risk of high blood pressure than those with normal BMI. So you should always keep your body weight under check to keep healthy.

Renin homeostasis: High activity of the enzyme renin can cause increased blood pressure.

Salt sensitivity: Your genes play a role in making you sensitive to salt intake. You are salt sensitive when your blood pressure increases more than 10% after a high salt meal. You may feel slight discomfort after the meal.

Vitamin D: It has been seen that the deficiency of Vitamin D results in increased secretion of the enzyme renin. Hence, whenever the level of Vitamin D rises in blood plasma, it results in high blood pressure.
People suffering from any of the above condition are likely to have high blood pressure.

Treating blood pressure risk factors

It might have become evident to you that High BP of this type can not be treated unless the risk factors are treated. However, risk factors such as age, salt sensitivity and genetic makeup are those which make treatment ineffective. Further, in factors such as renin homeostasis the treatment with potassium can work as well backfire, resulting in increased levels of the enzyme renin. In other cases (obesity, for example) prevention is better than cure.

Secondary Hypertension (High BP)

This type of hypertension (high blood pressure) is a result of certain identifiable causes. These include causes such as:

1.    Adrenal hypertension
2.    Cushing's syndrome
3.    Coarctation of the aorta
4.    Drugs
5.    Liquorice: Consumption of liquorice candy can raise blood pressure to risky levels.
6.    Polycystic kidney disease (it is a genetic disorder of kidneys)
7.    Pregnancy (up to 10 per cent pregnant women experience high blood pressure)
8.    Renal hypertension
9.    Sleep apnea
10.    Tumours: Some tumours can be the cause of high blood pressure.

Secondary high blood pressure can be treated by treating the identifiable causes. Proper diagnosis should precede treatment.