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High Blood Pressure

Prima Medicine -  - Internal Medicine

Prima Medicine

Internal Medicine & Family Medicine located in Fairfax, VA, South Riding, VA & Merrifield, VA

High blood pressure is called the silent killer because it has no symptoms, at least not until it becomes life-threatening. To ensure your blood pressure is well-controlled, Chethana Rao, MD, and her experienced medical team at Prima Medicine offer on-site blood pressure checks at their Fairfax and South Riding, Virginia, offices. They create a custom treatment plan focusing on long-term methods to manage your blood pressure to prevent heart attacks and other complications. Find out more about blood pressure treatment in Fairfax or South Riding by calling the office nearest you today or booking an appointment online.

High Blood Pressure Q & A

What is high blood pressure?

High blood pressure, also called hypertension, is a condition where the force of your blood against the vessel walls is consistently too high.

If left untreated, high blood pressure can result in a number of serious health complications, increasing your risk of heart attack and stroke.

What causes high blood pressure?

Your blood pressure is a measure of the amount of blood being pumped out by your heart and the amount of resistance to the flow of blood in your arteries. When your arteries narrow, blood can’t flow as effectively, resulting in high blood pressure.

Primary hypertension might not have an identifiable cause. You tend to develop the condition gradually over several years for no specific reason.

Secondary hypertension results from an underlying medical condition like:

  • Sleep apnea
  • Kidney disease
  • A thyroid disorder
  • Blood vessel defects

Overuse of certain medications like birth control pills and over-the-counter cold medications can also increase your risk of secondary hypertension.

How is high blood pressure diagnosed?

Routine blood pressure checks are essential to identify high blood pressure levels because the condition shows no symptoms until levels become dangerously high.

Dr. Rao offers blood pressure checks at each visit, especially if you’re at risk of the condition due to your age or existing health conditions. The simple, painless test involves a pressure-measuring arm cuff that monitors the force of blood in your arteries with each heartbeat and between each heartbeat.

What treatments are available for high blood pressure?

In many cases, Dr. Rao and her staff first recommend making lifestyle changes to reduce your blood pressure naturally. These changes can include:

  • Losing weight
  • Adopting a low-salt diet
  • Getting sufficient exercise daily

Dr. Rao can also recommend stress-reduction techniques like breathing exercises to slow your heartbeat and reduce your blood pressure.

When lifestyle changes aren’t enough to control high blood pressure, Dr. Rao can prescribe medication to relax vessels and improve blood flow.

If you haven’t had your blood pressure checked lately, call the office nearest you to schedule a blood pressure evaluation. You can also book an appointment conveniently online.