Harvard Heart Letter

When should we treat blood pressure?

Lifetime cardiovascular risk now plays a role in the decision.

High blood pressure (also known as hypertension) is a major risk factor for cardiovascular problems. It forces the heart to pump harder, making it thicker and less efficient over time. High blood pressure also damages the lining of the arteries, providing new sites for plaque growth and greatly increasing the risk of heart attack, heart failure, stroke, and kidney failure.

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