Hypertension Specialist

Ridgepark Family Practice, Inc.

Diane M Kushnar, DO

Board Certified Family Medicine Physician located in Parma, OH

Hypertension doesn’t make you feel ill, but it does have the potential to end your life as it can cause heart attack and stroke. You can prevent the problems associated with hypertension by calling Diane Kushnar, DO, at Ridgepark Family Practice, Inc. in Parma, Ohio. She can carry out a simple blood pressure check to see if you’re hypertensive, and help you reduce your blood pressure if you are. Call Ridgepark Family Practice, Inc. today to schedule a consultation or book an appointment online.

Hypertension Q & A

What is hypertension?

Hypertension is a condition that’s commonly referred to as high blood pressure. Blood pressure is the force at which your blood is pumping through your arteries, and if the force is excessive, it can cause severe and, in some cases, deadly complications, including:

  • Atherosclerosis
  • Aneurysm
  • Internal bleeding
  • Coronary artery disease
  • Heart attack
  • Arrhythmia
  • Heart failure
  • Cardiac arrest
  • Stroke
  • Kidney disease

Despite being capable of causing such devastating diseases, hypertension in itself causes no noticeable symptoms. Unless you have your blood pressure checked regularly at Ridgepark Family Practice, Inc., you won’t know there’s anything wrong and might suffer a fatal heart attack or stroke.

How is blood pressure measured?

Although hypertension is a serious disease, diagnosing it is one of the most straightforward procedures in medicine. When you see Dr. Kushnar at Ridgepark Family Practice, Inc., she wraps a blood pressure cuff around your arm and inflates it until it’s tight. She takes two readings, one when your heart is beating (systolic pressure) and the other in-between beats (diastolic pressure).

The systolic and diastolic measurements combined make up your blood pressure reading. A healthy reading would be 120 (or below) systolic, 80 (or below) diastolic, which is expressed as 120/80.

Raised blood pressure would be a reading of between 121 and 140 systolic, or 81 and 90 diastolic. High blood pressure would be reading over 140 systolic or over 90 diastolic, and if your blood pressure measures over 160 systolic or 100 diastolic, that’s dangerously high.

Dr. Kushnar can tell you whether you have hypertension straight away. She can then discuss what steps you should take to lower your blood pressure. Controlling blood pressure is vital, and there are several key actions you can take to help keep your blood pressure under control.

How is hypertension treated?

Most cases of hypertension are related to poor lifestyle choices, for example, being overweight, smoking, eating a poor diet, and lack of exercise. Therefore, treatment for hypertension almost always begins with making changes to your lifestyle, including:

  • Losing weight
  • Quitting smoking
  • Cutting down on alcohol
  • Getting regular exercise
  • Reducing salt intake
  • Cutting out bad dietary fats
  • Relieving stress

If your blood pressure is high enough to be a risk to your health, Dr. Kushnar might recommend you take prescription medications such as:

  • Diuretics
  • Beta-blockers
  • ACE inhibitors
  • Calcium channel blockers
  • Alpha-blockers
  • Alpha-2 receptor agonists
  • Angiotensin II receptor blockers
  • Combined alpha and beta-blockers
  • Central agonists
  • Peripheral adrenergic inhibitors
  • Vasodilators

If you lose weight and make the other healthy changes to your lifestyle, you could reduce your blood pressure enough, so you no longer require medication.

If you need assistance with making changes to your lifestyle, Dr. Kushnar can help. She provides information, advice, and support, including a medically managed weight loss program.

To arrange a blood pressure check or get help with living a healthier lifestyle, call Ridgepark Family Practice, Inc. today, or book an appointment online.