Hypertension

Jason Edward Peters, MD, PA

Family Medicine located in Harlingen, TX

If your blood pressure is above 120/80 mm/Hg, it means you have hypertension. Though common, without intervention and treatment, hypertension can increase your risk of a heart attack or a stroke. At the practice of Jason Edward Peters, MD, PA, family medicine physician Jason Peters, MD, and Victor Gonzalez, PA-C, provide comprehensive care for hypertension. To make an appointment at the practice in Harlingen, Texas, call the office today or click the online booking feature.

Hypertension Q & A

What is hypertension?

Hypertension occurs when the force of the blood pumping through your arteries remains high for an extended period. Over time, that excess pressure damages the walls of your arteries, increasing the risk of a cardiovascular event. 

Hypertension doesn’t present obvious symptoms. As a result, many people are at risk but don’t realize it. Visiting your primary care physician at least once a year is an easy and effective way to keep your heart healthy.

What are the types of hypertension?

There are two types of hypertension:

Primary hypertension

Primary hypertension occurs slowly. Experts aren’t sure why it occurs, but genetics and the natural aging process may play a role.

Secondary hypertension

Secondary hypertension occurs due to an underlying medical condition, like high cholesterol, obstructive sleep apnea, or kidney disease. Secondary hypertension occurs suddenly and is usually more severe than primary hypertension.

Who is at risk of hypertension?

Anyone can experience hypertension, but several factors increase your risk, including:

  • Being middle-aged or older
  • Family history
  • Living a sedentary lifestyle
  • Drinking alcohol
  • Smoking

You’re also more likely to experience hypertension if you’re stressed or have an underlying medical condition like diabetes.

How is hypertension diagnosed?

To diagnose hypertension, your Jason Edward Peters, MD, PA, provider wraps an inflatable cuff around your arm. The cuff is connected to a pressure-measuring gauge. 

Blood pressure is measured in millimeters over mercury (mm/Hg). You have normal blood pressure if your reading is at or below 120/80 mm/Hg. A reading that is any higher indicates hypertension.

How is hypertension treated?

Treatment of hypertension depends on various factors, including your age and medical and family history. Often, healthy lifestyle changes like checking your blood pressure regularly, losing weight, eating a nutritious diet, and participating in routine exercise are enough to make a significant difference.

If your blood pressure remains high or your readings get progressively worse, you might benefit from prescription medication. There are several drugs that treat hypertension, including diuretics, calcium channel blockers, and beta-blockers.

If you’re concerned you have hypertension, make an appointment at the practice of Jason Edward Peters, MD, PA, by calling the office or scheduling online today.