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Hypertension | Signs And Symptoms Of Hypertension- Health Info

Hypertension | Signs And Symptoms Of Hypertension- Health Info


In this health fitness article, we would like to share what is hypertension, the types of hypertension, and what are the effects it has on the human body.  Secondly, we shall try to share five underlying causes of high blood pressure.

What Does Hypertension Mean?

Hypertension is when the force of blood against the artery wall is high enough that it may lead to health problems such as heart disease.

Two types of hypertension are generally known to people, the first one is called primary hypertension also sometimes referred to as idiopathic hypertension.

Meaning that the cause is not fully understood, the second major type of hypertension is called secondary hypertension.  And that's due to known issues such as kidney disease.

Basically, there are varying opinions on what's considered high blood pressure.  For example, the world health organization defines high blood pressure as 140 millimeters of mercury over 90 millimeters of mercury in Australia.

Below 120 over 80 is considered normal, 120 over 80 to 120 over 84 is considered normal, 130 over 85 to 139 over 89 is considered higher to normal, 140 over 90 to 159 over 99 is considered mild hypertension, 160 over 100 to 179 over 109 is called moderate hypertension, and 180 over 110 or more is considered severe hypertension.

When looking at blood pressure, it's also important to look at the difference between the top and the bottom number or the systolic and diastolic pressure.

This is called pulse pressure.  This is very important because the wider the number between the two the greater the risk of heart disease.

The optimal being around 40 points different for example 120 over 80 is a 40 point difference.

There are studies showing that 10 millimeters of mercury increases in the pulse pressure increase the risk of major cardiovascular complications and mortality by up to 20 and a pulse pressure greater than 70 millimeters of mercury can put patients at risk of cardiovascular events.

So you might be wondering how can Chinese medicine support someone with high blood pressure aside from a blood pressure monitor.

Chinese medicine has a useful diagnostic tool called “pulse diagnosis”.  That gives additional information about the state of a person's vascular system.

In fact, the left radial artery has the treasure chest of information that tells us about the condition of the heart and its associated arteries and blood vessels.

But you might be wondering, we have scans blood tests, and blood pressure monitors, why do we need “pulse diagnosis”?

Well! The answer is very simple.  Scans and blood tests can detect serious issues.  However, they can also miss a lot of information that leads up to that point.

The reality of western medicine is that it's emergency medicine and it's fantastic at that.  However, the focus isn't always on getting you healthy rather, it's about stopping you from dying.

A cardiac treadmill stress test can detect 70 or more blockages, through the coronary arteries.

However, if a patient doesn't trigger the test by only having a 50, 60, 70 restriction of blood flow through the coronary arteries.

Does this mean that the patient is healthy?  Of course not.

They're just not diseased enough yet.  Chinese medicine is very different.  It's focused on the underlying problems before they turn into late-stage problems.

So we are discussing underlying problems.  Let's cover the most common underlying causes of hypertension.

According to Chinese medicine as we’ve mentioned Chinese medicine is quite opposite in the reality that this emphasizes underlying problems rather than superficial symptoms.

This is because Chinese medicine is hell-bent on treating underlying issues that cause symptoms rather than focusing on the symptoms themselves.

So in another article we shall try to share the common underlying issues and how we approach them in our cloning.
The first most common underlying course is something called heart blood stasis.

Now heart blood stasis is a Chinese medicine term that refers to inefficient blood vital air and nutrient flow through the heart.

Clinically this presents with systolic pressure above 140 and a normal diastolic pressure around 75 accompanied by a slow to normal heart rate.

And when palpating the left radial artery at the corner of the left wrist crease there will be a small stiff jump under the fingers.

Meaning that when putting your finger on the radial artery it will feel stiff and rigid.  As in there's no amplitude or no flexibility in the artery.

Sometimes when palpating a radial artery in this position the pulse is no longer just under the skin instead you have to push down deeper towards the bone to feel anything at all.

And sometimes it will feel completely blocked as if there's no pulse present at all.  This post presentation in Chinese medicine is associated with the hardening of the arterial system.

A stiff vessel and poor blood flow through the hut patients with this pulse can also have a high pulse pressure.

This means a pulse pressure of more than 40 points difference between the top and the bottom numbers and such a problem is associated with arteriosclerosis.

One of the major problems here is that the artery doesn't expand fully when blood moves through, because it's too stiff.
So when there's blood moving through a stiff vessel, it causes blood pressure to go higher in an ideal situation.

We want the arteries to be bendable, but in this matter, they are not instead.  Stiff vessels restrict the flow of blood moving through the arterial system.

In addition to these changes, the heart rate can often be slow relative to high pressure.

This causes blood to flow throughout the vessel at a lower ratio.  And you might ask how is blood moving too slowly if blood pressure is too high?

Because the reason behind this is, the tube is clogged up or too stiff and doesn't expand when blood flows through in heart blood stasis this requires Chinese herbal medicines that circulate blood oxygen and nutrient through the blood vessels.

And the best class of Chinese medicines to do this are called blood movers.  Also, Chinese herbal medicines that soften the vessel wall are also important in western medicine such a patient may be given an ace inhibitor in order to soften their vessel wall or an angiotensin-based drug.  And that brings us to the second most common underlying cause.

The second most common underlying cause in Chinese medicine is called blood stasis with heat.

Now you might be wondering we are being dealt with in a strange way to describe something, but all it is, is the descriptive word of underlying problems similar to inflammation.

In this case, this type of high blood pressure is caused by plaque buildup inside the arterial wall.

Now a lot of people associate heart disease with old people however, plaques can actually start to develop at a young age in the aorta of the heart.

Over time as we get older the disease moves into the coronary arteries and later in life, it gets into the cerebral arteries.

And that's when we start having problems with memory and brain function.

Clinically patients with such problems typically have high systolic pressure and high diastolic pressure.

So both the top and the bottom numbers are high accompanied by a fast heart rate close to 80 bits per minute or more when using pulse diagnosis and palpating the left radial artery close to the wrist crease.

It will feel thick swollen and spongy.  This represents a narrowing of the inside of the vessel wall due to inflammation.

And cell proliferation basically it's an inflammatory disease inhibiting blood flow through the arteries.

These types of patients also come along with other issues at the same time such as fatty livers, poor circulation through the liver, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and have a higher risk of heart attack, a high sugar diet, and cigarette smoking are considered common causes of this particular situation.

How well sugar breaks down into glucose makes the blood thicker.  And when there's thicker blood circulating through the arteries, it creates a sandpapering effect on the inside of the vessel wall, and the artery becomes inflamed.

As protection cholesterol attaches on the inside of the vessel wall similar to a band-aid.  And if this keeps happening over time the inside diameter of the blood vessel will get smaller and smaller.

And with a smaller diameter, less blood flow is circulating into the heart.

In Chinese medicine, the ideal treatment will include blood-moving herbs.  In combination with herbs that shrink swollen blood vessels and have anti-thrombotic effects, a category of Chinese herbal medicines called heat clearers can also be used to help lower blood pressure and support the health of the blood vessels.

Many of these have beneficial effects on blood pressure but also help reduce inflammation.

In western medicine, beta-blockers channel blockers, or even anti-inflammatories could be prescribed.

So another common cause of hypertension is blood stasis through the kidney and or kidney insufficiency.

So high blood pressure can be also caused by blockages in the small capillaries and or larger arteries in the kidney as well as Arteriosclerosis in the vessels of the kidney.

In this scenario, a patient with this problem can often experience sharp blood pressure fluctuations.

One of the major issues with this problem is that blood flow can't get through the kidney easily which indirectly raises blood pressure.

So when it comes to pulse diagnosis the key sign is that the radial pulse is actually very weak.

As in when you put pressure on the radial pulse, it collapses under the fingers.

However, if you work your way up to the brachial pulse at the elbow, a strong pounding pulse will be present.

This pulse presentation represents a blockage of blood flow through the kidney.  So the vessels around the heart may not have hardened, but the small arteries in the kidney have hardened or closed.

This can lead to water retention as well.  In this scenario, herbal diuretics and blood movers can be used to circulate blood back through the kidney and clear excess water.

Another strategy is to warm up the kidney and widen blood vessels as well as improve the glomerular filtration rate.

In western medicine patients are often medicated, because creatinine and levels are high and diuretics are often given.

So another common cause in Chinese medicine of hypertension is something called invisible hypertension as the name suggests the cause of this type of high blood pressure is difficult to identify.

In western medicine, this is also called primary hypertension.  Because no cause has been found from clinical experience.

This is most common in thin patients when palpating the radial artery.  The pulse is usually very thin and very tight.

This is accompanied by cold hands tiredness and fatigue.  This can be very dangerous because these people feel so tired that they consume energy tonics.  Which can increase their blood pressure even further and even potentially damage their heart.

These people also drink a lot of caffeine to try and increase their energy without realizing that they're making their blood pressure even worse.

In this scenario, a combination of Chinese medicines that support the blood flow through the heart, but also help circulate blood through the kidney at the same time can be quite useful.

So we've discussed four underlying causes that commonly lead to hypertension.

However, we'd like to share two extra problems that are important to treat at the same time for example many patients with hypertension also have a lot of fluid retention.

If blood pressure is high accompanied by fluid retention in their legs and feels tired all the time.  This is a common sign that the heart is congested.

Now there's a specific Chinese medicine that works very well by clearing excess fluid buildup from the chest and supporting blood flow through the heart.  This herb is called “Mao Dong Qing”.

Another common problem is constricted blood vessels or what's called vasospasm which can be very dangerous.

Because it can lead to serious problems for example, when the radial pulse is extremely thin like a small wire in the left radial artery near the wrist crease, it's like a traffic jam inside the body.

There's a four-way highway of the blood being directed into one lane.  This patient will get periodic spike sensations in the chest often due to chronic stress in fact another name for this condition is called “Broken Heart Syndrome”.

Because it usually happens after they've lost a loved one or they've experienced serious mental or physical traumas.

The tighter and thinner the pulse the more severe the constriction is, in this situation Chinese medicines can be used to expand or vasodilate blood vessels to provide the best outcome.

So outside of what was just discussed, what else can we do in Chinese medicine to help high blood pressure?

Well! There's something called acupuncture.  In fact, a number of scientific studies on animals and humans have shown that acupuncture can reduce high blood pressure.

The most positive research in this area has seen 4 to 13 point reductions using acupuncture by sending messages to the brain stem.

When the brain stem receives these signals, it reacts by releasing the body's own opioids, and also non-opioid neuropeptides.

The result of this is expanding blood vessels around the heart, resulting in lower blood pressure.

In medical clinics, there are common areas, that we like to stimulate that have a reliable track record of supporting lower blood pressure.

It's important to note when using acupuncture that the area is more important than the exact point.  So as long as you're in the area then you'll notice a nice benefit.

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