High blood pressure (hypertension)

High blood pressure (hypertension) is the most common chronic disease in France. It constitutes, when it is not controlled, one of the main causes of cardiovascular, cerebrovascular or neurodegenerative complications (myocardial infarction, stroke, Alzheimer’s disease…). With few symptoms, it usually appears with age, often accompanied by excess weight. (1-2)

  • Hypertension means excessive pressure in the arteries. It accelerates the aging of the heart and arteries. The work of the heart muscle is increased due to the stronger pressure to which it is subjected. It will therefore grow, become less efficient and exhaust itself (1).
  • We talk about high blood pressure when (2):
  • High blood pressure is the most common cardiovascular disease, and is even the first chronic pathology in France. It is estimated that one in three adults is affected.
    Its incidence increases with age: it would thus concern less than 10% of 18–34 year olds against more than 65% after 65 years. (2).
  • If high blood pressure cannot be cured, it can be treated very well if diagnosed (1). Indeed, hypertension being most often “silent”, many people are unaware that they are affected.. In France, if 10 million hypertensives are treated, it is estimated that 5 million people have untreated hypertension (1).
  • High blood pressure increases the risk of stroke, ischemic heart disease (angina pectoris, myocardial infarction), lower limb arterial disease (narrowing of the arteries that supply blood to the legs) and chronic renal failure that may eventually require dialysis (2).
  • In addition, blood pressure indirectly increases the activity of the heart to maintain constant blood flow that can eventually develop into heart failure (2).
  • Healthy diet measures, combined with drug treatment, are most often used to control blood pressure (2).

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