High blood pressure, also known as hypertension, is known as “the silent killer” for good reason. It has no symptoms, and is the leading cardiovascular cause of death worldwide. The American Heart Association (AHA) estimates that nearly one-half of all adults in the US suffers from high blood pressure. This means more than 100 million Americans are walking around with this deadly condition — and many of them don’t even know they have it.
Significant resources have been spent to broaden awareness of hypertension; nevertheless the AHA notes that the number of deaths caused by hypertension rose by almost 38% between 2005 and 2015 in the US. And that’s despite the development of new medications and protocols.
Such an outsized problem deserves a huge response, and that’s what hypertension just got. More than 300 researchers collaborated on a massive project to identify the genetic risk factors of hypertension.
While some risk factors for high blood pressure can be changed, like physical activity, smoking, alcohol, and diet, there are also genetic factors that predispose people to high blood pressure. If people are aware that they are genetically predisposed to the disease, researchers hope they can be more easily convinced to make the lifestyle changes that will prevent it.
The study analyzed data about systolic, diastolic, and pulse blood pressure in more than 1 million people, and cross-referenced it with their genetic data. The results, published in Nature Genetics, reveal the identity of more than 500 gene locations that are associated with high blood pressure.
The study’s authors found “new biological insights into blood pressure regulation,” which pave the way for new methods for regulating blood pressure, as well as improved ability to prevent cardiovascular disease.
At Hamilton Grove Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center, in Hamilton, NJ, we take a team approach to hypertension. Our physicians, nurses, therapists, nutritionists, and dietitians work together with our residents to lower their blood pressure. And we maintain constant communication with the patients’ personal physician. With our thorough, collaborative efforts, we are able to achieve the best outcomes for our residents.
Or better yet, come see for yourself: Contact us to schedule a tour by calling 609-588-5800 or by clicking here.