Secondary hypertension and its unknown causes

Today, secondary hypertension can easily be caused by many health-related factors, including obesity, kidney disease or hormone disorders.

High blood pressure is a common health problem with an incidence of one in three, that is, one in three people face it. In most cases, the patient will have essential hypertension. However, nowadays, not a few people are diagnosed with secondary hypertension.

So, what is secondary hypertension? Why can this situation arise? Let's find the answers with SignsSymptomsList.com through the article below.

You may be interested: How is high blood pressure diagnosed?

What is secondary hypertension?

Blood pressure is the force exerted by the heart, responsible for transporting blood to different parts of the body. Hypertension or high blood pressure arises when the pressure is too intense. This also represents problems like:

  • Arterial walls tend to be damaged
  • The heart muscle works too much, negatively affecting the health of this organ

Based on the cause of high blood pressure, researchers have divided this condition into two groups, including:

  • Idiopathic hypertension: also called primary hypertension. According to statistics, more than 90% of people with high blood pressure fall into this group. For idiopathic hypertension, doctors can't seem to pinpoint the exact cause.
  • Secondary hypertension: arises due to certain medical conditions. Usually, only about 10% of people with high blood pressure fall into this category.

Secondary causes of high blood pressure

As with many other medical conditions, treatment for secondary hypertension will provide better results when you determine why your blood pressure readings are above the ideal range. In addition, in this case, the treatment has the potential to control both the underlying health condition and the high blood pressure. From there, the risk of complications will also decrease, including:

  • Heart-related diseaes
  • CKD
  • Stroke

You may want to read more: Tips for treating high blood pressure in the elderly.

Common causes

In most cases, blood pressure readings are at risk of rapidly increasing due to health problems such as the following:

  • Chronic kidney disease
  • Sleep apnea
  • Adrenal gland problems, including tumors
  • Aortic spasm (narrowing of the aorta) or atherosclerosis
  • Pregnant
  • Using certain medications, including:
    • Birth control pills
    • Amphetamines
    • Antidepressants
    • Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
  • Hormone (hormonal) problems, such as hyperaldosteronism

Secondary Hypertension and Unexpected Causes • SignsSymptomsList.com

Hormonal disorder

Secondary hypertension that arises from hormone problems often includes hyperthyroidism and thyroid dysfunction. One of the roles of hormones is to control blood pressure. Therefore, if there is an abnormal change in their number, the blood pressure will also change. For example, when you're stressed, your body releases more adrenaline than usual. At this time, due to the overproduction of hormones, the hormonal reproductive organs will require more oxygen as well as necessary nutrients for energy. As a result, the heart will have to pump more blood to this area, causing a temporary increase in blood pressure.

Kidney problems

On the other hand, if the arteries leading to the kidneys narrow due to atherosclerosis, the number of red blood cells that pass to the organ will also decrease. This can damage kidney tissue and cause blood pressure to rise.

In fact, the kidneys play an essential role in blood pressure control. When blood passes through the kidneys, special cells "measure" blood pressure, thereby regulating the amount of the hormone renin secreted by the kidneys. Renin is responsible for controlling the production of two other hormones, angiotensin and aldosterone. Both have the potential to affect blood pressure.

You may want to learn: What do you know about the causes of high blood pressure in the elderly

Factors that cannot be improved

Besides the above causes, the intensity of a person's blood pressure is also at risk of being increased by certain factors, such as:

Age

The older you are, the higher your blood pressure readings are, especially your systolic blood pressure. This can be explained by the capillaries then "aging" and become stiff, difficult to circulate blood.

Secondary Hypertension and Unexpected Causes • SignsSymptomsList.com

Race

According to results from several studies, African-Americans tend to be more prone to hypertension than white or yellow-skinned people. In particular, these people can develop high blood pressure at a very young age. At the same time, complications of hypertension will also occur earlier with severity.

Family history (genetic factors)

High blood pressure appears to be hereditary, experts say. If someone in your family has the disease, your risk of developing high blood pressure is also higher than the general population.

Sex

In general, men are more susceptible to hypertension than women. However, this percentage will vary, depending on age as well as race.

Factors that can be prevented

To prevent secondary hypertension from occurring, you can proactively take some simple home precautions, such as:

Maintain a healthy weight

According to experts, obesity is one of the common factors that have a direct ability to cause high blood pressure. Some statistical results indicate that the risk of high blood pressure in overweight people is 2–6 times higher than in people with a healthy weight.

Secondary Hypertension and Unexpected Causes • SignsSymptomsList.com

For this reason, medical experts recommend that people actively adjust their weight index to a healthy level to prevent high blood pressure. If you are obese, try to lose weight. If you don't know what your healthy weight is, you can ask your doctor for help.

Limit sodium (salt) consumption

Excessive sodium accumulation in the body is also a common cause of high blood pressure. Therefore, reducing the amount of salt consumed each day will be a measure to help you prevent and treat high blood pressure.

Fast food and processed foods are products that contain large amounts of salt. On the other hand, some over-the-counter medications such as pain relievers are also high in sodium. Therefore, you should consider before using such products or preparations. Read the label before you buy to learn about the sodium content of the product. You should aim to consume 1,500mg or less of sodium each day.

Avoid alcoholic beverages

Red wine can provide many health benefits. However, for some people who are sensitive to alcohol, this drink carries a risk of raising blood pressure. Therefore, in order to maintain blood pressure in the ideal range, you should limit alcohol consumption.

Secondary Hypertension and Unexpected Causes • SignsSymptomsList.com

Do not abuse birth control pills

In some cases, oral contraceptives can increase blood pressure in women.

Regular physical exercise

A lifestyle with little exercise or physical activity contributes to the development of obesity risk. From there, the risk of high blood pressure in you will also increase.

Be careful when taking medicine

Certain medications, such as amphetamines or weight-loss drugs, tend to cause blood pressure to rise. Because high blood pressure has no obvious symptoms, it's important to learn about the side effects of medications before taking them.


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