Friday - - Health -

Dr Adam Mather busts myths about hy­per­ten­sion… Hy­per­ten­sion is ge­netic. If some­body in your fam­ily has it, you’re bound to get it and there’s noth­ing you can do about it. True and false! Yes, there is a ge­netic com­po­nent to hy­per­ten­sion, but just be­cause some­body in your fam­ily has it, does not mean you will in­evitably suf­fer from hy­per­ten­sion. Also, it def­i­nitely does not mean that you can­not pre­vent it with ap­pro­pri­ate life­style mod­i­fi­ca­tions. The causes of hy­per­ten­sion are dif­fer­ent in women. False. In gen­eral, the causes of hy­per­ten­sion are the same for both women and men, al­though the preva­lence of each cause may vary be­tween the sexes. aving said that, there are cer­tain causes that may re­late to fe­male re­pro­duc­tive or­gans, such as the as­so­ci­a­tion be­tween poly­cys­tic ovar­ian syn­drome and hy­per­ten­sion. But this is rel­a­tively rare. The lower the blood pres­sure, the health­ier the per­son. True, in gen­eral. The risk as­so­ci­ated with in­creas­ing blood pres­sure is con­tin­u­ous. With ev­ery 2 mmHg rise in sys­tolic blood pres­sure, the risk of mor­tal­ity from heart dis­ease in­creases by 7 per cent and the risk of mor­tal­ity from stroke in­creases by 10 per cent. High blood pres­sure among the el­derly is noth­ing to be wor­ried about. False. While it is true that blood pres­sure in­creases with age and that we ac­cept higher ‘nor­mal’ ranges of blood pres­sure in pa­tients over the age of 80 years, higher than nor­mal blood pres­sure is al­ways a con­cern. There is no cure for hy­per­ten­sion. True, at least at present.

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